Sustainability lies at the heart of the European Regions of Gastronomy development strategies. And increasingly our regions are looking for local solutions to tackle urgent global challenges that jeopardise regional biodiversity and the environment.
That is why themes on sustainability such as the World Bee Day and Eliminating Plastics were among the main focuses of the 15th European Region of Gastronomy Platform meeting, held in Galway-West of Ireland, European Region of Gastronomy awarded 2018, on 27-29 November 2018.
In particular, Platform partners gathered to share local good practises and to propose possible joint actions that can contribute to the safeguard of the world bee population and encourage the reduction of plastics in favour of more sustainable alternatives.
The authentication of local artisan production was also dealt with, exploring the values and accreditation systems used in the different regions to label regional craft and how these support local small producers.
Finally, the regions discussed opportunities to develop joint projects further such as the Food Film Menu, the Top Food Experience, and the Local Food Gift Challenge.
During the meeting, representatives from the European Regions of Gastronomy had also the chance to visit and learn from local producers and entrepreneurs in Galway-West of Ireland region selected as local best practises in sustainable farming, short supply chains and championing local, innovation on tradition, innovative tourism, and linking urban and rural. Among them: Green Earth Organics; The Friendly Farmer; Brownes Restaurant; Micil Distillery; Mungo Murphy’s Seaweed Co.; Killary Fjord Shellfish; Lough Inagh Lodge; and Kylemore Abbey.
The meeting gathered the awarded European Regions of Gastronomy and welcomed four observer regions interested in a future bid for the title: Balearic Islands (Spain); Rogaland County (Norway); Terra di Marca (Italy); and Brașov County (Romania).
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 and the Food Film Menu.