Recent research has shown that tourists visiting Goa have an interest in cuisine, with gastronomic tourism becoming an essential element in attracting tourists.
The research also suggested that Goa has huge potential in gastronomic tourism and needs to systematically focus on it.
“Emphasis needs to be given to the quality of food, taste, fragrance, nutrition and nature, to understand gastronomic tourism,” revealed the research paper.
These were the findings in a research paper on “Gastronomic tourism experiences of Goa: tapping the potential of Goan cuisine as a destination attraction” which was published in the Sustainability, Agri, Food and Environmental Research journal.
The research was conducted by Assistant Professor Mayola Fernandes and Associate Professor Arun Sherkar of AISSMS College of Hotel Management and Catering Technology (Pune) and Professor Seema Zagade of Maharashtra State Institute of Hotel Management and Catering Technology (Pune).
The study concluded that organisations of gastronomic tourism must know about different types of culinary tourism and the factors affecting it, and effective strategies need to be developed to improve the industry.
It also highlighted the importance of strategies to improve gastronomic services, food guides, new dishes and recipes, cooking books, cooking classes, restaurants, ambience, etc.
“Food has to be prepared in an ethnic manner, including fresh fragrance that enhances food flavour”, the report states.
It stated that food is a natural element of any region, showing its culture and tourists worldwide experience such gastronomic services. Hence, organisations in the gastronomic industry need to ensure the satisfaction of tourists.
“Travelers must be impressed by the tastes of the food and its quality and cleanliness that will make them visit the destination repeatedly and will refer others as well. Goan food, which has an amalgamation of simple flavours and solid Portuguese influence, adds to its uniquely complex combination.”
“There are many paths that Goan cuisine has traversed and has tremendous potential of further increasing the tourism potential and acting as a critical player in the State’s economic status in a delectable manner”, the study report says.
The study was conducted by interviewing 190 tourists through a questionnaire.
The results revealed that gastronomy has begun to play a significant role in the way tourists approach and experience a destination.
The report also suggested that the government should conduct food festivals near tourist spots.