One of the culinary centers of the world, Italy is a dream destination for food lovers. From perfectly cooked pizzas to delicious pasta dishes to endless gelato varieties, amazing cheeses and world-class wine, visitors can discover the country’s world-famous cuisine on countless food and wine tours in Italy.
One of the many beauties of the Italian food scene is that it’s not limited to certain cities or regions. You can find amazing food and wine in every corner of the country, from its Mediterranean islands like Sicily and Sardinia to the Alps in the north and the spectacular coasts.
Additionally, Italy is also a great destination for responsible, environment-conscious travelers. There’s a huge agriturismo “industry”, which offers stays at and visits to (organic) farms. Those include animal farms, but also olive growers and other plant-focused enterprises. As a food lover, you can’t be closer to the source than that.
Below, we highlight some of the major food and wine tourism trends in Italy. These are our predictions of what you, as a tour operator or travel agent, should focus on in 2020.
Food and Wine Tourism in Italy: Predictions and Trends for 2020
As a general trend, we predict that food and wine tours in Italy will only get more popular in 2020. The Millennial generation makes up a huge part of the traveling population and they simply love good food.
There’s a clear evolution toward the quality of food, a focus that’s shifted from where to eat to how to eat. This insight brings us to our five food and wine tourism predictions for 2020.
Organic Food Gets More Popular
The notion of “organic food” has existed for a while, but didn’t expand to the general masses until quite recently. Nowadays, however, its rise is hard to ignore. More and more people now try to eat more healthily and organic food plays a huge part in that philosophy. So, one of the biggest food and wine tourism trends in 2020 will be the continued rise of organic food, produce and restaurants.
Culinary Learning Experiences On the Rise
It’s not exactly a secret that many modern-day travelers want something more than a simple bite at a restaurant. The increased popularity of experiential travel is also clearly reflected in the growing demand for culinary learning experiences.
Many people don’t just want to taste food anymore, but they actually want to learn about its roots, ingredients, the way it’s prepared. So, hands-on culinary experiences, such as cooking workshops and harvest tours, will get ever more important in 2020.
Special Events Offer Huge Opportunities
To meet and profit from the increased culinary travel trends, many cities in Italy now organize special food events. These events offer visitors a larger incentive to visit a destination at a certain time, while also offering a fantastic insights in an area’s culinary traditions and offerings. As a tourism professional, we recommend you to consider focusing more on those food-related events in 2020.
Authenticity Is More Important Than Ever
In line with another one of our food and wine tourism trends (number 1) is the fact that authenticity gets more significant every year. Many foodies who visit Italy will ask for authentic culinary experiences, from locally owned family restaurants to home stays. This is exactly why, as a tour operator, you should start focusing on working with local providers to accommodate this increasing demand.
A Growing Focus on Sustainability
Sustainability is a trend across multiple different tourism niches nowadays, but it’s especially important to food and wine tours in Italy. As the demand for authentic food experiences grows, visitors will continue to raise the bar in terms of environment-friendliness.
People get more and more conscious about the way they affect and influence local economies, environments and nature. Therefore, we can expect an increase in the focus on sustainability in the future. Offering food and wine tours in Italy in a sustainable way will become more important in 2020, for sure.