Algarve Craft & Food launched

in News · 08-03-2020 12:00:00 · 0 Comments

Local handicrafts and typical Algarve food products are the stars of the new project “Algarve Craft & Food”, launched by the Algarve Tourism Region (RTA). The aim is to value and promote traditions, gastronomy, culture and natural heritage as assets to enhance the offer of cultural and creative tourism.

Developed in partnership with Tertúlia Algarvia, QRER - Cooperative for the Development of Low Density Territories and the Associação Turismo do Algarve, the project aims to create and promote differentiating tourist experiences, of a sustainable nature, especially in places traditionally with less affluence, such as rural areas and the interior of the Algarve.

“Algarve Craft & Food” supports the preservation and revitalization of traditional practices and customs, increasing the sources of income for artisans and local food producers.

To this end, in the context of this project, a set of activities will be developed which, in addition to promoting the region's offer in the segment of cultural and creative tourism, along with national and international markets (USA and Europe), comes at the same time to train artisans and producers local agri-foodstuffs so that, together with designers and chefs, they bet on innovation and the development of products and programmes with tourism potential.

Examples include creative residencies and technical workshops for artisans, designers, local agri-food producers and chefs; creative laboratories of traditional Algarve cuisine; a seminar on the internationalisation of local handicrafts and food products; the development of five new handicraft products and ten new cultural and creative tourism programmes focused on these products. The different initiatives also include training actions for these agents and internationalisation in European markets such as Spain and emerging markets such as the United States of America and the creation of the “Craft & Food Award”.

For João Fernandes, president of RTA, “the 'Algarve Craft & Food' is a strategic project because, by boosting our traditions in crafts and gastronomy, it enriches the visit, contributing to enhance the interior of the Algarve and, at the same time, diversify the offer, mitigating seasonality and reinforcing the conquest of new markets”.

"This project is also especially relevant because it puts the Algarve at the forefront of trends in the tourism sector, in the concepts of 'slow made' and 'slow food'. It comes to promote an offer that invites tourists to experience the region at the pace of local life, the community and its knowledge and flavours”, stresses João Fernandes.

According to João Amaro, executive director of Tertúlia Algarvia, the project is “probably the first step in the region for the creation of a virtuous relationship between the Arts and Crafts sector (handicrafts) and the agri-food sector, associating them to tourism promotion through the development of cultural and creative tourism programmes”.

“Recognizing that the small size and specialization of companies and production units in both sectors is a constraint to be overcome, we believe that the quality and diversity of our products - associated with the image of sustainability and respect for ecological values ??and traditions - will allow us to create in the future tourism products capable of competing on a global scale”, adds João Amaro, for whom “this is the authentic Algarve that we want and we will promote internationally”.

As for the president of the QRER cooperative, Sara Fernandes, “combining the region's cultural wealth with a quality tourist offer is something valuable for the positioning of the Algarve in the main international tourist destinations. It is also a strategic approach to the enhancement of our intangible heritage that needs to find mechanisms that guarantee a sustainable future. This project aims to contribute to this vision, combining traditional crafts and gastronomy with innovation, design and creativity, contributing to the dynamization of the territories of the Algarve interior. It is our ambition that this initiative can also further position the Algarve countryside in a global offer of cultural and creative tourism, and that this is reflected in a growth in the region's economic activity”, concludes Sara Fernandes.


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