TODAY.AZ / Arts & Entertainment

Thrive in country's gastronomic tourism sector promotes economy and entrepreneurship

08 June 2023 [15:53] - TODAY.AZ

By Azernews

Laman Ismayilova

Gastronomic tourism has become one of the fastest growing innovative tourism sectors, which positively impacts the economy and fosters entrepreneurship.

Another advantage of gastronomic tourism is that it can be a great way to explore new cultures and experience authentic local cuisines.

World-famed for its food, Azerbaijan is now taking decisive steps in the gastronomic tourism world. The country offers a wide variety of gastronomic opportunities.

The country has been consistently working to promote the country's culinary heritage through a number of initiatives.

A press conference on "Azerbaijan's Gastronomic Tourism Prospects" has provided more details on this tourism form, Azernews reports.

Head of the State Tourism Board's (ATB) Gastronomy Tourism Management Sakina Asgarova noted that multi-directional works have been carried out to promote Azerbaijan as a gastronomy destination.

In her speech, Sakina Asgarova emphasized that the National Culinary Center has done major work for the research, preservation and promotion of national cuisine samples. Currently, work is being continued in the direction of supporting the activities of young professional chefs through various educational programs.

"It is no secret that Azerbaijani cuisine is distinguished by its unique tastes. Gastro tourism is known worldwide as a unique tourism form. The number of tourists in search of gastronomic tours as well as new tastes is increasing in the world experience. They are visiting other countries in search of new culinary tastes. All these make gastro tourism an important tourism form," she said.

Deputy Chairman of Azerbaijan State Tourism Agency Azada Huseynova and the Chairman Adviser Kanan Guluzade spoke about the work done by the agency on the development of gastronomy tourism.

A new strategic approach has been introduced by the State Tourism Agency (ASTA) regarding the development of gastronomy in Azerbaijan. Major work is being done to promote the forgotten national dishes.

Azada Huseynova noted that dolma and kebab remain among the most popular national dishes. However, Azerbaijani cuisine has much more to offer food lovers.

The State Tourism Agency seeks to promote traditional food recipes that are being forgotten.

"For this purpose, the work is being done with a number of institutions. Initially, were intended to organize several pilot trips. Later, this project will also be open for business and our guests will get to know our forgotten dishes," said Azada Huseynova.

The Culinary Days are planned to be held in Shusha this year. The Gastronomy Center will be built in Tugh village.

Recall that the First Shusha International Culinary Festival was co-organized by the Heydar Aliyev Foundation and the State Tourism Agency in Shusha last year.

The culinary festival gathered chefs from Azerbaijan, Turkiye, Germany, Austria, China, France, South Korea, Israel, Italy, Japan, Belgium, Czech Republic and other countries.

The State Tourism Agency pays special attention to culinary taste of tourists.

"Some time ago, when we conducted work on attracting Chinese tourists to the country, it became clear that they only want to taste the dishes of their own cuisine in the countries they visit. That is why we are working in this direction with our gastronomes," said ASTA Deputy Chairman.

Work is also underway on the street food concept in Azerbaijan.

"Turkish doner and lahmacun are mostly known as street food in our country. Now we are working on a national street food concept, which mainly focuses on different types of qutab," she said.

The State Tourism Agency plans to open qutab food points in Israel and Turkiye.

In conclusion, the conference participants responded to several questions of journalists.


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