Food and wine tours in Italy are one of the most popular activities in the land of pizza and parmesan, Chianti and Montepulciano. It’s a widely known fact that Italy is one of the world’s top culinary destinations. It has the potential to overwhelm everyone from the most indifferent eaters to expert foodies with its amazing variety of world-class ingredients and dishes.
Tour operators who are planning to offer food and wine packages in Italy in the future are encouraged to do it in a sustainable way. As the general public becomes more and more aware of the environmental issues that result from our modern lifestyle, an increasing number of visitors to Italy are looking for sustainability in their travel activities. Sustainable tours are a fairly new niche in the tourism industry with tremendous possibilities for tour operators like you.
How to Organize Sustainable Food and Wine Tours in Italy
In its essence, sustainability means that certain things are done in such a way that they’ll last forever. In terms of food and wine tours in Italy, this includes providing a liveable income for local farmers, producers and other tourism suppliers, keeping one’s ecological footprint as small as possible and eliminating pollution, among other things.
Keep in mind that this is a growing tourism niche, which one day might even dominate the industry. It’s a business opportunity unlike any other in existence today, so we at Find Your Italy strongly encourage you to look into it and jump on the bandwagon. You’ll quickly realize how many people are actually looking for these kinds of food and wine tours in Italy.
These are the five essential best practices that you, as a tour operator, should take into account when organizing sustainable food and wine tours in Italy.
1. Choose Organic Farms / Food
One of the most important things you can do to make your food and wine tours in Italy as sustainable as possible is choosing organic farms over regular farms. In addition to being overall healthier for consumers, organic foods are also great because they put less pressure in the local environment.
Organic farming practices include the elimination of pesticide use, overproduction and fertilization. All these things can have adverse effects on local drinking water supplies, biodiversity and ecosystems. By only including organic farms and organic food in your Italy food tours, you will greatly contribute to the sustainability of both your tours and the local environment.
2. Stay at Family-Run Accommodations
The best way to support the local people and economy, which is a cornerstone of sustainable tourism, is staying at family-run accommodations, using local tour guides, etc. This puts tourist euros directly into the pockets of the locals, while also ensuring that your customers get the most authentic Italy experience possible.
Participants in your tours will appreciate the chance to meet “real” Italians with a passion for their profession. That’s something that’s hard to find in the major tourist cities and at large hotel chains, where revenue rules and customer service is often put on the backburner. So, in order to promote a sustainable type of food and wine travel, choose to stay at places like agritourism farms, eco-friendly glamping accommodations or family-run B&Bs.
3. Visit Off-the-Beaten-Path Regions
Since many people visiting Italy want to visit some of the country’s most iconic destinations, such as Florence, Venice and Rome, you can include one of them in your itineraries. It’ll make your food and wine tours in Italy all the more attractive to potential customers.
That being said, however, with sustainability in mind, it is also important to include less-visited regions in your tours. Or you can organize your entire tour in an off-the-beaten-path destination. This will keep the ecological as well as touristic footprint of your tours lower, by taking away some of the environmental pressure from those often-overcrowded cities.
4. Include Muscle-Powered Outdoor Activities
Another critical part of organizing sustainable food and wine tours in Italy is eliminating pollution. You can do that by keeping the need for transportation to an absolute minimum. That’s possible by staying in and exploring only one Italian region (versus traveling all around the country) as well as using muscle-powered ways to get around.
Consider including outdoor activities like biking, hiking and even kayaking in your sustainable food tours in Italy. Besides being super-environment-friendly, they’ll also offer your customers the chance to really experience the Italian landscapes. They’ll have the chance to smell rural scents, feel the breeze, hear birds sing, enjoy the abundant Italian sunshine,…
5. Rely on Local Suppliers
In order to offer the best possible sustainable food and wine tours in Italy it’s important to work with local suppliers such as Find Your Italy. With our expertise, local knowledge and connections, we can help you put together amazing sustainable tours all over Italy.
If you’re interested in what we can offer you, you can find several of our food and wine tours in Italy on our tour packages page. Feel free to reach out!