Awareness About Gastronomy Panel organized in the framework of the 23rd International Exhibition of the Mediterranean Travel and Tourism (EMITT) was held on 27 January 2018 at the Tuyap Conference Centre in Istanbul. Mr. Mehmet Duman, UCLG-MEWA Secretary General, attended the Awareness About Gastronomy Panel as a speaker.
In his speech, Mr. Duman stated that as UCLG-MEWA had an intense global agenda and the most important of them was “UN’s Sustainable Development Goals 2030” adopted in 2015. Secretary General Duman also added that this 17th Goals, had carrying a great importance in terms of gastronomy tourism.
Mr. Duman underlined that travelling for gastronomy experience is becoming a global trend and that gastronomy tourism has a better understanding of the impact on sustainable development.
Secretary General Duman referred to the fact that “tasting food/ gastronomy ” tourists spend money nearly 50% more than the regular tourists , and said that UCLG-MEWA has begun work on localization of the United Nations’s Sustainable Development Goals, in this regard, it has organized workshops and training courses to raise local awareness.
During the addresses of Secretary General, he mentioned that in the worldwide, 4 of the 26 cities in the UNESCO Creative Cities Network (Zahle, Lübnan (2013)- Gaziantep, Türkiye (2015)- Rasht, İran (2015)-Hatay, Türkiye (2017)) from the list of Gastronomy in the MEWA region. He also added that as UCLG-MEWA, they introduced this network in the MEWA Region and they are encouraging its members to join it.
Secretary Genral touched that UCLG-MEWA had played a motivating role in creating awareness in the MEWA region through the Culture and Tourism committees and encouraging locals and mobilize them. In line with this UCLG-MEWA organized Immigration, Culture and Gastronomy Summit on 19-21 April 2016 hosted by Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality and UCLG-MEWA Committee on Tourism, Sustainable Tourism Meeting ” hosted by Konya Metropolitan Municipality, he sasy.
Lastly, gastronomy tourism plays an important role in sustainable development and as UCLG-MEWA, they are ready to develop cooperation on these issues he says.