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MNG03419 Gastronomic Tourism

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MNG03419 Gastronomic Tourism

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Course Code: MNG03419
University: Southern Cross University

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Country: Australia


‘Gastronomic Tourist Motivations’
Discuss what types of motivations are involved in the consumption of food on holidays.


Tourism is an activity which is required by humans to experience new and exciting things that reduces tensions while increase happiness in everyday life (Cohen & Avieli, 2004). Nowadays, tourists possess more experience than earlier days, have sufficient funds that can be spared in travelling and are able to spend leisurely time for holidays. Gastronomy is one of those experience in which tourists and visitors plan a particular trip in order to experience the taste of new food or local product or take part in activities related to gastronomy ( Gheorghe, 2014). Even if the gastronomy is not the main reason behind travelling or choosing a particular destination, it may become second or third reason behind selecting particular destination. In current literature, gastronomy have become significant topic for discussion among researchers and authors since gastronomic tourism has been seen growing immensely in the past few decades. According to (Gillespie, 2001), “Gastronomy is about the recognition of a variety of factors relevant to the foods and beverages ate and consumed by a group, in a locality, region or even a nation”. The word gastronomic has been derived from “gastros” that means stomach and “gnomos”, meaning knowledge in Greek language. The word “culinary” is also used by many country people for gastronomy which means food preparation or dishes (Güzel, 2016).  This essay has been prepared to find out motivational factors involved in the consumption of food during holidays along with finding major and minor issues related to gastronomic tourism as mentioned in present literature. 
Literature review
The interrelationship between tourism and food has become unquestionable topic in literature not only because food has become obligatory part of hospitality and tourism industry but also due to increase in recognition of evolving social and contextual practice ( Wehrli, et al., 2012).  According to (Hervé, 2013) in some cultures, cookery is considered as an art where good cooks are referred an artist. It can be noted that significant increase in number of tourists searching for diversified and unique food and cuisines have been increased in past few years in which tourists engage themselves in gastronomy to gain memorable experience. Moreover, contemporary expansion of cultural tourism concept also encompasses progressiveness in elements of cultural popularity and strategies that can make places more attractive. According to (Sormaz, et al., 2016) gastronomic tourism consists of activities like visiting food producers, places like food fairs, farmer’s markets, cooking shows and demonstration related to special food and eating during special occasion. During visiting, people look to taste different varieties of food related to ham, cheese, fish, beverages like wine, horchata, cider, tea, etc. (UNWTO, 2012) Along with it, gastronomic tourism also includes observing production of special food, tasting any special dish or tasting food from the hands of famous chef like Peter Gordon, a renowned chef famous for fusion cuisine and special restaurants (Gordon, 2006). Instead of food prepared at restaurants and hotels, tourists travel to experience special food and beverage. They pursue to visit those places where food actually belongs to and comes under the context of gastronomic tourism (Hervé, 2013).
Gastronomic tourism industry does not consist restaurants and food guidance only but also cover culinary experience like cooking schools, gastronomy tour operators, cookbooks selling shops, gastronomy related media and magazines, winemakers, breweries, field owners and distilleries. Development of gastronomic tourism is significant for local region communities who can also be considered as stakeholders of gastronomic tourism. Some of the shareholders in gastronomic tourism industry include grape field owners, package tours, hotel and restaurant owners and local food producers (Galvez, et al., 2017). Culture is another special feature in gastronomic tourism which is generally expressed under motivational factors of individuals to know about different culture. Moreover, gastronomic tourism being experience based tourism, helps visitors in learning cultural characteristics of host regions. For example, countries like Australia, America, South Africa and Italy are famous for its wine production and thus many wine lovers visit these countries to experience traditional flavours of different wines. Moreover, all these places are also famous for other food like pasta and pizza that makes these countries fall under gastronomic destinations (Sormaz, et al., 2016). Turkey is another great example where doner kebabs are very famous (special food made out of meat) and according to a research made regarding tourist choice for food related destination, Turkey cuisine ranked in fifth position. It was found that people travelled from far away places to taste and envisage special Turkish cuisine where tourists considered the cuisine to be very attractive, delicious, spicy and even fatty (Hammond, 2016).
Basic gastronomic tourists are essential for cultural holidays and festivals where food motivated travellers mainly include couples and groups who poses high educational degrees or spend more time in other culture’s stay and accommodation places. Their chief motivations for visiting gastronomic destinations include opportunity to rest, personal indulgence and for relaxation purpose (Cohen & Avieli, 2004). Similarly, ( Wehrli, et al., 2012) confirms that international and domestic tourists travelling to gastronomic places gains experience and knowledge related to different cultures were tourists gets motivated to seek adventure through tasting special food provided in special occasions along with getting chance to experience fresh ones like berries, buckthorn, bramble, mountain crowberry, etc. and different ones like sorbets, berry wine, marmalade, etc. Moreover, by getting experience of new ones related to food and beverage, food market in tourism destinations also becomes heterogeneous. (McKercher, et al., 2008) have further segmented the tourism market into three subcategories. According to the authors, first group of travellers travel to different destinations for gastronomic reasons like trying local food where during their stay, most of the activities are related to gastronomy. The second group gives importance to food, but not too much. Although gastronomic reasons are involved, but issues related to them does not affect selection of their holiday destinations. Third group consist of those tourists whose gastronomic activities varies from less to none. The first group food consumption reasons are crucial during their holidays where they consider gastronomic elements mostly present in local food. Second group people also give importance to gastronomy but not as compared to group one. Whereas in the third group, gastronomy is not considered while selecting holiday destination, however, they attend events related to gastronomic activities. Other than these groups, other types are ones those are not interested in gastronomic activities at all during their holidays (McKercher, et al., 2008).
In present literature, many authors have mentioned that motivational factors involved in the consumption of food in holidays depends on influence of food choices and preferences in individuals, thus, integrating social, biological and psychological effect in them ( Diaconescu, et al., 2016). Broadly, these motivations are classified into different factors that include escape from routine, learning knowledge, authentic experience, health concern, exciting adventure, prestige and togetherness. The key determinant of quality service in hospitality industry is providing with good sensory appeal, prestige and physical environment. Studies on food consumptions demonstrates that motivational elements like escape from routine, health concern and prestige play important role while consumers make choice for food. Demographic factors like age, education also gender also affects making food choices where individual functions according to interrelated aspects of mental health and personality. Socio economic factors like education, and lifestyle determines other aspects like nutritional intake, health and hygiene, physical activities and other welfare services (Brug, 2008). Physiological factors includes neophilia or neophobia in which personality is determined by finding out whether or not individuals are enjoying new food. Neophilia or Neophilia is a food related personality trait like rejection of unfamiliar food or thoughtful sensory input like smell, taste and appearance of food which is engendered by cultural and physiological influences among people (Shukri, 2017). Therefore, (Cohen & Avieli, 2004) emphasised that gastronomic tourism can bring forward considerable issues like differences in culture and diversified food preferences in holidays.
According to (Güzel, 2016), if destinations has several food choices, then the society uses it as a tool for attracting tourists which in turn create economic impacts. Therefore, food tourism must be considered as a significant aspect while considering development reasons of destinations. According to the author, gastronomic tourists’ behaviour in food consumption are affected by cultural and religious factors mostly along with other food related personalities like motivational factors, socio-demographic factors and past and present exposure. For evidence, Italian people avoid French and Japanese food whereas American behaves softly on this.  Personality traits like sensory attributes and flavours along with past and present experience also contributes cuisines interests where tourists like to revisit due to their special interest in particular food ( Diaconescu, et al., 2016). Ethnic restaurants and hotels can provide with such opportunities while giving tourists particular regions food experience without visiting those country. However, it must be noted that host country local food may be different in taste and thus tourists remain motivated to engage themselves in gastronomic tourism. While discussing about the factor related to prestige, Thailand is a good example that can explain how good image of food providers enhances destination image. Since Thailand offers broader range of menu along with offering friendly employees and food in reasonable prices, the image in mindset of tourists remain positive for the country. Nevertheless, this type of creation may require enhanced knowledge with expertise.
Few issues can affect motivational factors while selecting food in holidays like impurity in cuisines and multiculturalism factors that may affect tourists’ customs. Immigrants bring their culture and own traditions to new countries including their gastronomic philosophies and food preferences.  Multiracial destinations also influence tourists as they may consider the ingredients used for production process in those countries. Although cultures may differ, interactions among cultures may affect familiarity issues (Mak, et al., n.d.). Still, ethnic food is based on traditional preparation and local food techniques even if they may sound undesirable or authentic to some tourists. Geographical and climatic conditions also affect produced food by restricting flavour in them. For example, if the destination is an island like Croatia and Africa, food consumed will mostly be grounded on seafood and fish. Along with it, historic identity and traditions demark eating habits like in Muslims, where food is allowed according to Islamic conditions and terms. Besides, social and financial status in society also affects food choices in holiday destinations along with innovation and production changes like introduction of packaged and processed food (Sormaz, et al., 2016). 
Gastronomic tourism motivation revolves around food, exploration of history and culture along with experiencing new taste. Since, these types of tourism has become a new trend in travel and tourism industry, tourists’ characteristics and motivations can be determined by making a study on present literature. If any destination has unique food options, it is used as used as key tool in attracting tourists. It can be noted that motivational factors behind gastronomic tourist’s food consumption depends on several factors like personality traits, culture, religion and socio-demographic. Besides, food and tourism act as major element in contemporary world economy where food remains the key reason behind attracting tourists while making choice for holiday destination. The above study has united relevant perspectives related to food consumption in holidays and sociological investigation to find salient factors that affects tourist’s food choices and motivations behind selecting gastronomic tourism destination.
Brug, J., 2008. Determinants of healthy eating: motivation, abilities and environmental opportunities. Family Practice, 25(01), pp. 50-55.
Cohen, E. & Avieli, N., 2004. Food in Tourism: Attraction and Impediment. Annals of Tourism Research, 31(04), pp. 755-778.
Diaconescu, D. M., Moraru, R. & St?nciulescu, G., 2016. Cinsiderations on Gastronomic Tourism as a Componenet of Sustainable Local Development. Contemporary Approaches and Challenges of Tourism Sustainability, 18(10), pp. 999-1014.
Gheorghe, G., 2014. Gastronomic Tourism, A New Trend For Contemporary Tourism??. Cactus Tourism Journal, 09(01), pp. 12-21.
Galvez, J. C. P., Guzman, T. L., Buiza, F. C. & Viruel, M. J. M., 2017. Gastronomy as an element of attraction in a tourist destination: the case of Lima, Peru. Journal of Ethnic Foods, 04(04), pp. 254-261.
Gillespie, C., 2001. European Gastronomy into the 21st Century. New York: Routledge.
Gordon, P., 2006. About Peter Gordon. [Online] Available at: https://www.peter-gordon.net/about/[Accessed 19 09 2018].
Güzel, B., 2016. Global Issues and Tends in Tourism. s.l.: St. Kliment Ohridski University Press.
Hammond, B. R., 2016. Motivations for Food Consumption during Specific Eating Occasions in Turkey. Foods, 05(02).
Hervé, 2013. Molecular gastronomy is a scientific discipline, and note by note cuisine is the next culinary trend. This Flavour, 02(01), pp. 1-8.
Mak, A. . H., Lumbers, M., Eves, A. & Chang, R. . C., n.d. Factors Influencing Tourist Food Consumption. [Online] Available at: https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/16390022.pdf [Accessed 19 09 2018].
McKercher, B., Okumus , F. & Okumus, B., 2008. Food Tourism as a Viable Market Segment: It’s AllHow You Cook the Numbers!. Journal of Travel & Tourism Marketing, 25(02), pp. 137-148.
Shukri, W. H. W. Z., 2017. Unfamiliar Food Consumption among Western Tourists in Malaysia: Development of the Integrated Model. [Online] Available at: https://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/842487/1/Sept%202017%20Wan%27s%20corrected%20draft%20PhD%20thesis.pdf[Accessed 19 09 2018].
Sormaz, U., Akmese, H., Gunes, E. & Aras, . S., 2016. Gastronomy in Tourism. Procedia Economics and Finance, Volume 39, pp. 725-730.
UNWTO, 2012. World Tourism Organization (2012), Global Report on Food Tourism. [Online] Available at: https://cf.cdn.unwto.org/sites/all/files/docpdf/amreports4-foodtourism.pdf [Accessed 19 09 2018].
Wehrli, R. et al., 2012. Tourist’s understanding of sustainable tourism. GSTF Journal on Business Review, 02(02), pp. 219-224.

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