Taste Local, an innovative new food tourism project, has been launched with the aim of improving South West Wales’ food offer by exploring how delivery partners across the EU develop their local food culture.
This will help businesses in rural areas to develop potential markets both locally and trans-nationally.
The Carmarthenshire Local Action Group (LAG) has been successful in securing the funding of £219,640 to run this transnational project and the South West Wales Tourism Partnership (SWWTP) will deliver it over the next 15 months.
Along with partners in Italy, Denmark, Greece and Spain, the partnership will develop a joint project which will give the tourism sector opportunities to build on food tourism through sector skills development, marketing, branding and cultural activities.
Core components of the initiative will be the hosting of an international Food Tourism Conference, the development of a multilingual digital platform linked to a bursary scheme for food producers and the hospitality sector to visit partner countries to learn and share best practice.
Taste Local is funded through the Co-operation Fund under Axis 4 of the Rural Development Plan (RDP) for Wales 2007-2013, which is funded by the Welsh Government and the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development.
Nia Ball, Chair of the Carmarthenshire LAG says: "Research shows that the availability of good quality, locally sourced food has a big impact on the visitor experience - and can also influence decisions of where people visit.
“Carmarthenshire, as well as the wider region, has strong potential with regard to food tourism and this exciting new project provides the chance to share the successes that have been achieved to date in the area as well as bringing the important opportunity to explore new and innovative ideas undertaken by other rural food tourism destinations."
The Carmarthenshire LAG focuses on innovation and encourages people to become involved in improving their rural communities through schemes such as RDP Sir Gar’s Innovative Hubs. This includes the Rural Tourism Clusters project which aims to get residents of rural Carmarthenshire to work together to have a positive impact on their community by boosting tourism in their area.
Other RDP Sir Gâr funded schemes designed to help boost tourism in rural Carmarthenshire include grants of up to £25,000 to upgrade tourism facilities and training courses for tourism service providers.
If you would like further details on any of the RDP Sir Gâr schemes, please call the Community Bureau on 01269 590 216.
The Taste Local Bursary scheme will be open to all food and tourism businesses within the RDP areas of South West Wales through an application process. For more information please contact Lowri Edwards on 01558 669091/07977 989723 or email: email@example.com - www.ffres.org