Central Denmark Region has announced the allocation of 1 million euro over three years to secure the legacy of its European Region of Gastronomy 2017 title. As part of the region’s Growth Plan 2016-2020, the European Region of Gastronomy programme has a strategic role in supporting regional sustainable development by strengthening cross-sectoral collaboration between gastronomy, culture and education with the aim to develop Central Denmark Region as an international gastronomic hub.
The initiative, that will be run from the end of 2018 until the end of 2021, demonstrates how the European Region of Gastronomy title is a powerful catalyst from where long-term development strategies depart, with the objective to ensure a better quality of life for local communities.
The project was developed on the basis of three main pillars: the region’s bid book, prepared by Central Denmark Region to present their candidature for the European Region of Gastronomy 2017 title; the evaluation report of the title year; and the results of three consultation workshops held across the region in April 2018 to collect knowledge, experiences and aspirations of local food, culture and tourism operators, as well as their views on how to plan the European Region of Gastronomy legacy.
A tender has been launched to identify a coordinating body for the project that will be in charge of harmonising the efforts of all the actors involved into a single strategy, devised in line with the principles, focus areas and objectives identified by IGCAT and the European Regions of Gastronomy in their Official Guidelines.
The coordinating body will be expected to represent a plurality of stakeholders including municipalities, private companies, educational institutions, and local organisations that will join a partnership aimed to create collaborations across the region and among different sectors.
The region’s strategy will focus on local gastronomy and food produce as a means to create more and better food experiences for citizens and visitors that will contribute to generate local revenue and boost an integrated development of the region’s urban and rural areas. Innovation will be at the centre of the project’s efforts addressed to an increasing convergence of gastronomy, culture and tourism with other sectors such as climate, the environment, health, mobility, education, and energy solutions. Activities will be designed on the basis of the existing strengths of the region, ensuring both environmental and social sustainability.
Within the overall strategy, events will be organised as a means to build new collaborations across sectors and encourage experimentation and innovative solutions. Following a bottom-up approach, support will be provided to develop local unique food identities and signature experiences in close cooperation with the local communities, that will work as laboratories to generate and test new ideas.
Villages, associations, local communities, and actors in the gastronomic field committed to raise the profile of their region through gastronomy will be the main target audience of the European Region of Gastronomy project, together with cultural and educational institutions that will integrate food-related activities into their programmes.
Finally, the initiative will ensure continuity of Central Denmark Region’s commitment to the European Region of Gastronomy Platform, incentivising sharing of knowledge and best practices with other Platform members and their local stakeholders, as well as international collaborations and participation in joint projects such as the European Young Chef Award.
About the European Region of Gastronomy
Candidate and awarded Regions of Gastronomy from Europe, guided by IGCAT, are working together to raise awareness about the importance of their cultural and food uniqueness and share the long-term aim to: promote a better quality of life in European regions; highlight distinctive food cultures; educate for better health and sustainability; nurture creativity; improve tourism standards; and stimulate gastronomic innovation.
IGCAT is a non-profit institute established in 2012, working with regional stakeholder consortiums in the fields of gastronomy, culture, arts and tourism. It counts on the expertise of a worldwide network of experts and works in partnership with specialised intergovernmental organisations.
IGCAT aims to empower local communities by guiding, facilitating, and supporting leaders in regions to understand the potential of their distinct food, culture, arts and sustainable tourism assets.
IGCAT provides the Region of Gastronomy Award and is the official secretariat for the European Region of Gastronomy Platform. Furthermore, the Institute has developed the European Young Chef Award the Local Food Gift Challenge, the Top Food Experiences of the Year and the Food Film Festivals project.