Origins of food and drink matter

• Provenance and local origins are a major selling point for restaurateurs.
• Provenance and local origins are a major selling point for restaurateurs.

Operators should promote provenance of produce, tourism body says

SCOTTISH restaurateurs and bar operators should highlight the provenance of their produce to attract more custom, say tourism bosses.
A new report by VisitScotland claims traceability of food and drink will be a key tourism trend this year, which the tourism body is promoting as the ‘Year of Food and Drink’.
Marketing experts from the agency’s ‘insight department’ say consumers are increasingly interested in the origins of produce and urged business owners to use it as key selling point.
“Interest in provenance is growing, as consumers now seek transparency when it comes to the origin of their food,” the report says.
“Local food and provenance are now something to shout about. The move by consumers to understanding and seeking provenance has its links in trends of health and wellbeing, connections to landscape and appreciation of iconic produce.”
VisitScotland, however, advised operators offering “authentic Scottish experiences” that authenticity is “subjective”.
Chris Greenwood, senior tourism insight manager at VisitScotland, said: “Authentic experiences can mean different things to different people.
“For example, to some an authentic trip to Edinburgh might involve a trip to the castle, the sound of bagpipes and shopping for tartan, while to others it might mean going shopping in Multrees Walk or enjoying the capital’s nightlife.”
Other 2015 trends identified by the team include people avoiding companies which charge hidden costs.
Savvy consumers, it claims, are also taking fewer risks and conducting more research before making purchases or planning trips.
The VisitScotland Trends for 2015 paper is designed to give the tourism industry an informed outlook for the year ahead which will help them cater for today’s marketplace.
It urges the hospitality industry to ensure they cater for disabled people, as well as consumers seeking ‘escapism’ breaks.
The report says: “Consumers now look to combine their vacation with fitness or wellbeing activities and it turns out the aspiration to get well has become quite a money-spinner for the international tourism segment.”