Food producers and culinary leaders from Belfast and around the island of Ireland flew the flag for our food recently, on the Tourism Ireland stand at the BBC Good Food Show in Birmingham. At the show, Stephen Hope, junior chef at the Merchant Hotel in Belfast, beat off stiff competition to become the winner of the prestigious 2008 Gordon Ramsay Scholarship.
The island of Ireland is fast becoming known for the quality of its food, with a reputation for natural products used in both traditional and innovative dishes. The British market is very discerning about food and this aspect of holidaying on the island of Ireland appeals to them very much. Tourism Ireland’s participation at the annual BBC Good Food Show helps to raise the image of the island of Ireland as a superb food tourism destination.
Lawrence Bate, Head of Great Britain with Tourism Ireland, said: “The quality of our food is one of the key themes being promoted by Tourism Ireland in Britain this year. Britain is the largest market for tourism to the island of Ireland and in this difficult year for outbound travel from Britain we in Tourism Ireland are pulling out all the stops to win business and make sure that the island of Ireland is ‘top of mind’ with the British consumer.”
Pictured on the Tourism Ireland stand at the BBC Good Food Show in Birmingham are (l-r) Michelle Maguire, Ireland’s Blue Book; Roland Graham, head chef at the Merchant Hotel in Belfast; Stephen Hope, junior chef at the Merchant Hotel who won the Gordon Ramsay Scholarship at the BBC Good Food Show; Margaret Mellor, Tourism Ireland Great Britain.
Elaine Moore, Tourism Ireland, tel: 028 7035 9260/ 0776 652 7719
Sonya Cassidy, Weber Shandwick, tel: 028 9034 7300/ 077 7088 6920