Should Greece Bet on Gastronomy Tourism? see more
We grew up listening and reading about the beautiful Greek beaches and the brilliant sun of Greece. For many decades, people from all over the world have been visiting Greece to enjoy the unique Greek summer. Photos with sandy beaches and emerald waters travel around the world and are republished on social media platforms every day.
But is Greece only sun and sea? Apparently not. Greece is culture, history, way of living but also tasty food.
This has always been recognized by people from other countries! Greeks know very well how to enjoy the tasty food with good company!
The history of Greek gastronomy is long. Even today, there are Greek recipes which were included in ancient Greeks’ daily diet. Over the years, Greek cuisine has evolved, and has become what we all know and enjoy nowadays.
Greece has a strong gastronomic culture. It has plenty of recipes, great local products and people who know how to cook and they love to do it daily, in every corner of the country. All this makes us believe that Greece, in the coming years, will be able to claim a high position on the world map of gastronomy tourism.
We already have the first thing we need, the good local cuisine.
The second thing that helps Greece, is that in general there is a good reputation of Greek cuisine abroad.
So, how do we have to move forward?
Gastronomy tourism does not just mean that those who come to Greece will eat good quality and delicious food. It means that we will offer high-quality gastronomic experiences such as food tours, cooking classes, wine tastings, visits to dairies, estates, etc.
All of these activities should be recorded and create a tourist product. We need to describe them well and price them fairly. These programs should then be promoted abroad, through travel agents but also directly to the general public.
It is out of question that the gastronomy experiences offered, should be of a high standard. They should attract the tourists for their quality in order to make them continue spreading the word about Greece, even when they leave our country.
Food was from ancient times a way for people to approach each other. In Greece, the family table is something sacred. It gathers relatives and friends, where issues that concern them are discussed. The family table in Greece is where the Greeks communicate their joy or sorrow.
Greek people are hospitable. They honor their visitor and easily offer him a seat on their family table, making him feel a member of the family.
These are our two strongest elements for the future development of Greek gastronomy tourism. Our good local cuisine and the strong hospitality that the Greeks have. It is a combination that if it is cultivated properly, it is irresistible.
The development of gastronomy tourism in Greece will bring significant benefits to the agricultural sector too, since local Greek products will be consumed. This will also greatly benefit the local community, so profits are much larger than anyone can imagine initially.
What we need is to create organized and attractive tourist programs. Speaking for organized proposals, we do not mean suggestions that appeal only large groups of tourists from abroad. We are talking about a detailed inventory of the gastronomy experiences we can offer to our guests.
This is precisely the process that we will have to follow throughout Greece, so that Greek food tourism can be shaped and become an autonomous tourist product.
We should all work towards this direction, knowing that in the coming years gastronomy tourism is expected to rise to very high levels. It would be a shame if Greece would not be on the top since it is a country with long gastronomy tradition and a strong sense of hospitality.
Maria Athanasopoulou is an Ambassador of the World Food Travel Association in Greece and Master Culinary Travel Professional. She is also the founder of the tourism marketing company Respond On Demand Ltd.
Food Tourism, Gastronomy and Local Cuisine opinion/editorial by Maria Athansopoulou see more
Article submitted by Maria Athanasopoulou, Certified Ambassador
of the World Food Travel Association in Greece and Master Culinary Travel Professional
In recent years, due to my particular interest in food tourism, I have come in contact and spoken with tourism professionals from all over the world.
Every day I find that most of them confuse food tourism with gastronomy, considering it is exactly the same thing!
But is that right?
The truth is, that gastronomy and food tourism are two different things. In fact, the second requires the first one. In other words, in order to have food tourism, gastronomy must exist. Let's look at some basic definitions of both.
Gastronomy is “the art and knowledge involved in preparing and eating good food” - Cambridge English Dictionary
"Food tourism is the act of traveling for a taste of place in order to get a sense of place." - World Food Travel Association
It is clear from the above, that the concepts of gastronomy and food tourism are relevant but not the same.
The same applies to the concepts of local cuisine or local gastronomy and food tourism. Local gastronomy is the product that food tourism offers to visitors. It is what the gastro – tourists are interested in.
For example, the food traveler visits the Cycladic islands in Greece, in order to experience their local cuisine through various activities. The visitor's purpose is to participate in local gastronomic experiences.
These gastro-tourist experiences will eventually help create the final impression that visitors have about the food tourism that the place offers. And this impression, and memory, is what will determine if a place can really become a popular food tourism destination.
Gastronomy, Local Cuisine and Food Tourism are three separate things but one touches each other and many parameters are common to all three concepts. However, in order to successfully develop food tourism in a destination, it should be made clear to stakeholders, that gastronomy and food tourism are two different things!
Help developing Gastronomy Tourism in Greece see more
Do you want to do more with gastronomy tourism in Greece?
Greek Online Courses about Food Tourism!
Want to get involved professionally to Gastronomy tourism? Before doing anything else, check out our complimentary short courses below! Do you want to know where to start ? Are you curious about Greece's role on the global scene of gastronomic tourism? Do you want to find out how Gastronomic tourism is developing in Greece today? Do you want to learn how you can capitalize on this rising business segment? Watch today our two free online courses. offered in the Greek language by the World Food Travel Association and Maria Athanasopoulou, an Ambassador of the WFTA in Greece.
Ελληνικά online courses για το Γαστρονομικό τουρισμό
Θέλετε να ασχοληθείτε επαγγελματικά με το Γαστρονομικό τουρισμό? Πριν κάνετε οτιδήποτε άλλο, ενημερωθείτε σχετικά! Θέλετε να μάθετε από πού πρέπει να αρχίσετε? Θέλετε να γνωρίσετε κάποιες παραπάνω λεπτομέρειες για το ρόλο της Ελλάδας στην παγκόσμια σκηνή του γαστρονομικού τουρισμού? Θέλετε να δείτε πως αναπτύσσεται ο Γαστρονομικός τουρισμός στην Ελλάδα σήμερα? Θέλετε να μάθετε αν είναι ένας ανερχόμενος επιχειρηματικά τομέας? Παρακολουθήστε σήμερα δυο δωρεάν online courses στα ελληνικά, από την ambassador της WFTA στην Ελλάδα, Μαρία Αθανασοπούλου - H Μαρία Αθανασοπούλου είναι ambassador της World Food Travel Association στην Ελλάδα:
1. Gastronomic tourism and Greece
1. Γαστρονομικός Τουρισμός και Ελλάδα
by World Food Travel Association & Maria Athanasopoulou
2. The Role of Greece On the World Stage of Gastronomic Tourism
2. Ο Ρόλος Της Ελλάδας Στην Παγκόσμια Σκηνή Του Γαστρονομικού Τουρισμού
by World Food Travel Association & Maria Athanasopoulou
Greece Event Recap - Food Tourism: A Piece of Cake prepping for next year's FoodTreX Thessaloniki see more
This year, the World Tourism Day – September 27th - was celebrated in Greece at Ramada Plaza Thraki, with an International Workshop entitled "Food Tourism: A Piece Of Cake?".
The workshop was organized under the auspices of the Greek Ministry of Tourism and the World Food Travel Association (WFTA), by Respond On Demand and Τop Τοurism, two tourism development consultancies in Greece and whose owners serve as ambassadors of the WFTA in Greece.
Eight esteemed speakers from various countries, including the food tourism industry and WFTA founder Erik Wolf, talked about food tourism sharing their valuable experience for the benefit of tourism developers in Greece and surrounding areas. A few of the speakers are pictured on this page, and the full list of speakers is available here.
The nearly 100 industry professionals comprising the audience attended the full day event with great interest. When the speeches were over, a storytelling event took place just for the international speakers to introduce them to regional culinary specialties. They tasted local products and discussed their impressions with local tourism and culinary experts. Education and food tasting - perfect partners for a workshop. The day ended with an official gala dinner.
The success of this first food tourism workshop shows that this sector is of great interest in Greece and is going to be developed a lot in the future.
On October 7, 2019, this workshop will repeat under the FoodTreX Thessaloniki | Regional Food Tourism Summit brand, an official event of the World Food Travel Association.
Session 2 webinar about food tourism development in Greece during the Online Food Travel Summit see more
Promoting Food Tourism in a Time of Economic Austerity: The Case of Greece
This is the session 2 webinar, which takes place place during the Online Food Travel Summit.
DATE & TIME
Tuesday, April 24, 2018 at 10:00-10:50 PST (18:00-18:50 GMT)
Maria Athanasopoulou, Co-Owner, Top Tourism and
Xeni Gerna, Vocational Tourism Training Institute, Hellenic Ministry of Tourism, Thessaloniki, Greece
Greece is one of the world's favorite tourism destinations. Yet in recent years, the country has experienced economic hardships not normally experienced in a developed economy. Economists know that tourism is an excellent way to bring a fresh infusion of cash to a destination. Therefore increasing tourism would seem to be an important part of the solution to Greece's economic crisis. Yes and no. The problem is that there is so much competition among destinations, travelers have too much choice. A trip to Greece might absolutely be of interest, but there is simply too much marketing noise. How can a beloved destination like Greece rise above the clutter and make itself heard? The answer is food and drink. Greek food (i.e. authentic Greek food in Greece) has always been a highlight of any visit to Greece. Our speakers will discuss the measures Greece has been taking to leverage food and beverage tourism in this time of economic austerity. Topics covered include how Greece modified its destination marketing strategy, including branding of its food and beverages in a tourism context; the idea of gastronomy and destination attraction and loyalty; changes made by Greek food and beverage manufacturers to facilitate tourism; and low-/no-cost marketing tactics used by Greek food, beverage, tourism and hospitality businesses. Metrics will compare the economic situation and performance before and after these changes were implemented.
WHAT YOU'LL LEARN
- Identify the red economic flags that reveal a pending crisis and that important changes will soon be needed ahead
- How to develop & promote food and beverage tourism products and experiences with little or no budget
- In the face of enormous stress and rising emotions, best practices in crisis communications and how to join the voices of various constituents into the symphony of a consistent message that appeals to travelers overwhelmed with marketing "noise"
SESSION BEST FOR
- Marketing managers and strategists
- Branding, PR and advertising professionals
- Destination marketers and governments
- Small business owners and entrepreneurs
- Product developers
IMPORTANT EVENT FACTS
- This Summit includes 9 total sessions that cover best practices, how to's, and case studies, specifically for food and beverage tourism professionals.
- All sessions are delivered in English.
- You register and attend online like a webinar. No need to travel anywhere. Registrations close April 23. Space is limited for each session.
- All registered delegates get 1-year access to recordings of the sessions you've purchased. So even if your location means that the session times are not convenient for you, you'll still get access to the content (although you'll miss the Q&A by not attending live)
- This Summit is the world's only 100% online food and beverage tourism conference for trade professionals. It's our second major online conference (our first one took place in 2015).
- Pricing is very affordable, only US$12 per session for members (US$15 for non-members). Choose to pay per session or buy an All Access Pass for greatest savings. Non-members can bundle a new membership and All Access Pass for incredible savings!
- Sponsorships are available for only US$500 per session (limit one sponsor/session) and include session access for your co-workers, inclusion of your company name, logo and URL during the session, on the event page of the website and in our social media promotions. Let us know ASAP at email@example.com to start getting maximum exposure.
The World Food Travel Association Names its 2017 Ambassador of the Year. see more
The World Food Travel Association is pleased to announce the 2017 winner of its Ambassador of the Year award, Maria Athanasopoulou from Greece. Maria serves as both a Certified Ambassador of the Association, as well as on the Association's Board of Advisors. During the course of the past year, Maria arranged two Association events in Greece, negotiated distribution of the Association's Certification program through a culinary school in Greece, and flew to London to meet with Association representatives during World Travel Market. She is currently planning an Association-recognized regional conference for this coming September, is in the process of establishing an Association-endorsed food-tourism consulting practice in Greece, and will be speaking at the Association's Online Food Travel Summit this coming April 24-25. She is an excellent role model of a Certified Ambassador of the Association. You can learn more about Maria in her profile in our Member Directory. The Ambassador of the Year award is a new recognition introduced by the Association in recognition of Certified Ambassadors who have excelled in the past year in their role as a Certified Ambassador.
World Food Travel Association posted an articleWorld Food Travel Association Introduced in Greece see more
Association Board of Advisors member Maria Athanasopoulou welcomed a dozen members of Greece's tourism industry at the Etoile by Les Chefs Culinary and Hotel Studies School in Athens on September 12. http://news.gtp.gr/2017/09/13/world-food-travel-association-introduced-greek-market/See pictures and read the full story.