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    Conference website Conference website Presentation Transcript

    • Looking Forward; Looking Back: The Future of Local Food
    • Food in Waterloo Region• Assumption 1: – Food industry entrepreneurship is growing, if slowly• Assumption 2: – Food culture in Waterloo Region is growing, if slowly
    • Some Resto Statistics (courtesy CRFA)• Resto industry = $63 billion p.a. – 4% of Canada’s economic activity• Resto industry employs 1.1 million people – 6.5% of Canadian workforce; or, 4th largest sector• Resto industry employs 483,000 people <25 y.o.
    • Looking Back• Let’s pick just 10 years ago: – A few precursors to a “Local Food Movement” – A chain-restaurant Region – Meat-and-potatoes
    • Business / Commerce Opportunities Ahead• Three concepts to consider: – Under-marketed [under-marketable?] restaurant sector – Social Media / Piggy-backing on WatReg’s Hi-Tech energy – Culinary Tourism
    • Then and Now: Marketing Minimalism• Historically and Today: – Restaurants = poor marketers • Limited resources: money, time, people – Local “ethnic” restaurants in Waterloo Region • Unique and attractive but silent
    • Social Media in Food and Beverage• Looking back only 5 years – Little social media – Many restaurants had meagre websites – Few were savvy at communicating w/ customers• Today: Uptown 21 – A good example of savvy
    • Future Social Media Smorgasbord?• What does Waterloo Region’s Hi-Tech energy offer? – Growing business / entrepreneurial interest in: • Facebook • Twitter • LinkedIn • Pinterest • Quora
    • Foodlink’s Food Phone App
    • Tourism• 2008 = 42.3 million overnight visitors to Ontario• In terms of food, WR needs to unify programs & energies “related to industry associations, food entrepreneurs” and food communities;• Tourism can provide opportunities for FnB entrepreneurship between a multiple stakeholders.[ adapted from OCTA Strategy P - Ontario Culinary Tourism Alliance, “Culinary Tourism Strategy and Action Plan: 2011-2015” [http://www.mtc.gov.on.ca/en/publications/Culinary_web.pdf]
    • Culinary Tourism Defined …• A tourism experience during which: – Appreciation – Education – Consumption – Reflection … occurs in and around food and beverage “that reflects local, regional, national cuisine, heritage, culture, tradition and techniques.” - [adapted from OCTA, Strategy Plan]
    • Who Are Culinary Tourists?• Three distinct sectors: 1. 10% of tourists plan trips based on the food experience; 2. 80% include food experience in their larger tourism plans; 3. 10% of general tourists are “accidental culinary tourists” • [UW Professor Stephen Smith / OCTA Strategy Plan]• Sector 2 should be our target…
    • Waterloo Region Culinary Tourism• Fragmented / scattered ...• But with some developments: WR Tourism Corp’s evolution – This represents: • Potential future business opportunities • Improved quality of life in Waterloo Region