Jamaica can benefit from global food tourism market, says minister

Published on : Sunday, July 9, 2017

Jamaica global food tourism marketJamaican Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport Minister, Hon. Olivia Grange said that Jamaica can benefit greatly from the global food-tourism market.

Minister Grange, who was addressing the official launch of the ‘MoBay Jerk Festival’ at the Royal Decameron Resort in St. James on Wednesday (July 5), said that food tourism could harmonize the already well-established elements of the tourist experience, including entertainment.

Grange noted that the demand for culinary treats has been growing continuously worldwide, and Jamaica’s entry into that market would be a natural one.

To quote the Minister, “Food is big business, especially in the entertainment and hospitality sectors. In fact, in the last few years, food tourism has grown considerably and has become one of the most dynamic and creative segments of tourism, according to the World Tourism Organization.  That means that more and more people are travelling to a destination to experience the food.”

The Minister said she is excited about Jamaica’s prospects in the global market, noting that food tourism has the potential to stimulate several other sectors.

In addition, she said, Jamaica has a duty to protect the jerk tradition. “Much like reggae music, we have a duty to ensure that we protect and promote authentic Jamaican jerk.  Culinary activities, such as the Montego Bay Jerk Festival, give us an opportunity to market and present Jamaica as the home of authentic jerk food.”

The 2017 staging of the MoBay Jerk Festival takes place at the Catherine Hall Entertainment Centre on August 1.

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