13 October 2019
By Elaine Murphy
Fáilte Ireland is pulling out all the stops this weekend to highlight Ireland’s seasonal ingredients and unique food and drink experiences in Cork to a group of eleven international journalists.
The international visitors are in Ireland as part of a ‘Taste the Island’ showcase visit, hosted by Fáilte Ireland, as the National Tourism Development Authority in conjunction with Tourism Ireland, Ireland’s overseas marketing body.
The group include journalists with a combined circulation of 4million from Australia, UAE and Europe, who will have the opportunity to savour the sights, sounds, aromas and flavours of Cork. Included in their itinerary the group will attend a Kinsale Gourmet Festival reception, visit Ballymaloe Cookery School, enjoy the festival atmosphere at the English Market, join the Mad Hatters Taste of Kinsale for an escorted ‘foodie waling tour’, visit the Clonakilty Brewing Company, experience a West Cork Tasting menu at Inchydoney Island Resort and take a tour of the Macroom Buffalo Mozzarella Farm.
Food is a central part of the visitor experience – 35% of average tourist spend is on food and drink, making it worth over €2bn to Ireland’s economy every year so it’s clear that it makes a considerable contribution to Ireland. Fáilte Ireland’s research tells us that the quality of our food offering is repeatedly called out by visitors after they have experienced it. They leave Ireland with a hugely positive experience and view of our food and drink offering and leaving rating it much higher than on entering.
Taste the Island is an all-island three-year programme designed to significantly enhance Ireland’s reputation for its food and drink at home and abroad. The initiative has been developed by Fáilte Ireland in conjunction with Tourism Northern Ireland and Tourism Ireland.
Speaking about this important visit by top international media to Cork, Tracey Coughlan, Food Tourism Manager at Fáilte Ireland said:
“Food and drink consumption are an intrinsic part of the tourist experience. Quality experiences are now a major contributor to increasing holiday satisfaction, creating positive memories and driving advocacy. Amongst those deciding on a holiday location, the expectation of good food is nearly as important as hospitality.”
“These trips are a wonderful opportunity for overseas media and potential buyers to come and experience first-hand the wealth of delicious local ingredients and produce available throughout Ireland. As such, the media group play a key role in publicising Ireland’s authentic attraction to a global audience while the tour operators will include Taste the Island into their itineraries for next year and beyond.
“It is also a unique opportunity for Fáilte Ireland to showcase what Ireland has to offer to audiences in important markets including Australia, the UAE and Europe. We trust that they will relish their time here and encourage their many readers and followers to take the same journey to Taste the Island and firmly put Ireland on their ‘must-visit-soon’ list.”