Best Food Destination 2018
Best Food Destination 2018

Northern Ireland named World's Best Food Destination 2018

At major travel and tourism awards

The entry from Food NI, Northern Ireland’s food and drink promotion body, won gold at the prestigious International Travel and Tourism Awards.

Food NI pipped other global food destinations, including San Sebastian/Donostia in Spain, to lift the prestigious award for Northern Ireland for its organisation of the highly successful Year of Food and Drink in 2016.

The awards were held as the showpiece of the annual World Travel Market in London, the world’s leading global travel trade event, which attracts over 50,000 travel professionals from around the world. Entries were invited from across the world.

The coveted award was presented to Michele Shirlow, Chief Executive of Food NI.


I am thrilled to receive this strategically important award which positions Northern Ireland internationally as the leading destination for premium quality and innovative food and drink. This international award is a marvellous accolade for our industry and local producers in particular and should be a major benefit for our rapidly developing tourism industry as it seeks to attract even more visitors from across the world and in particular golf enthusiasts for The Open in Portrush in 2019.

Michele Shirlow, Chief Executive of Food NI

Food NI played the central role with Government departments including the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs, Tourism NI, Tourism Ireland and Invest NI in delivering Northern Ireland’s first year-long Year of Food and Drink in 2016, a celebration of outstanding food and drink and the people who produce it and provide it.

Raising the profile of Northern Ireland food and drink and the hospitality sector in a key objective in Food NI’s Taste the Greatness strategy. #TastetheGreatness.

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