Food producers and tourism operators from across the island of Ireland flew the flag for Irish food recently, on the Tourism Ireland stand at the BBC Good Food Show in Birmingham. On the stand were hotels, b+bs and guesthouses, food producers and restaurants, all representing some of the very best of Ireland and our culinary produce.
Attracting approximately 80,000 food-loving visitors, the Good Food Show is the largest consumer food and drink exhibition in Great Britain. This is Tourism Ireland’s twentieth year attending the show, helping to raise awareness of the island of Ireland as a superb food tourism destination. ‘Great Value Eating’ has been a key focus of Tourism Ireland’s promotional campaigns in GB in recent years, with the island of Ireland becoming increasingly known for its high quality, natural produce and the fine ingredients that are used to create both traditional and innovative dishes.
Vanessa Markey, Tourism Ireland’s head of Great Britain, said:”Food is a very important element of the tourism experience and the island of Ireland is increasingly becoming known for its high quality cuisine. Promotions such as the BBC Good Food Show in Birmingham help us to raise awareness of Ireland as a premier holiday destination with an outstanding food product, by ensuring that potential holidaymakers who visit our stand get to experience at first-hand the passion of local producers for sourcing, using and promoting Irish produce.
“The positive performance from Great Britain, our largest and most important tourism market, which has shown growth of over +5% for the first ten months of the year, is an encouraging basis on which Tourism Ireland, together with our industry partners, will build in 2012, working to win business and keep the island of Ireland ‘top of mind’ with the British consumer.”
Richard Hurley, Granville Hotel, Waterford; Margaret Mellor, Tourism Ireland; Mark Knowles, Clonea Strand Hotel; and Mary Houlihan, Waterford Tourism, at the BBC Good Food Show in Birmingham.
Further media information:
Sinéad Grace, Tourism Ireland
Tel: 087-685 9027
Notes to Editors:
• Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
• Tourism is the island of Ireland’s largest indigenous industry; responsible for in excess of 4% of GNP in the Republic of Ireland and employing approximately 200,000 people.
• Approximately 6.7 million overseas visitors came to the island of Ireland in 2010, delivering revenue of approximately €3 billion. Overseas tourism business accounts for 59% of all tourism revenue.
• Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.discoverireland.com; there are 42 different websites, providing information in 14 different languages covering every continent. In 2010 discoverireland.com attracted almost 12 million unique visitors.