The Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry jointly with the Russian State University of Tourism and Services and EXPOCENTRE AO held an Annual Panel on Russian Hospitality, dedicated to the theme “Gastronomic Souvenirs: Shaping the Tourist Experience”, within the accompanying programme of Prodexpo 2021, the 28th International Exhibition for Food, Beverages, Food Raw Materials.
Welcoming remarks were made by Sergey Selivanov, First Deputy Director General of EXPOCENTRE AO, and Viktoria Kalinina, Deputy Director of Exhibition, Fair and Congress Department of the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
The panel moderator, Rector of the Russian State University of Tourism and Services Alexander Fedulin, said that the national project in tourism included the creation of branded tourist routes. Therefore, the gastronomic component may become an important part of such a brand. In addition, the products can make the region recognisable.
Yulia Mikhaleva, Deputy Head of the Russian Quality System, said that impressions became the driver that developed any sphere. That is why the term "experience economy" appeared some time ago. Studies show that consumers spend 16% more on impressions that bring them positive emotions and a higher quality of service. And 78% of people are more willing to pay for experiences and impressions than for material goods. Thus, high-quality gastronomic souvenirs are in line with the objectives of the experience economy. All the more so because almost a quarter of Russian tourists bring back food and drink from their holiday.
At the panel, experts and speakers discussed the prospects and specifics of creating gastronomic souvenirs in Russia, considered best practices in the formation of high-quality domestic tourism products, taking into account gastronomic traditions and national characteristics of the regions. They shared their successful experience in promoting tasty souvenir products and discussed marketing strategies for supporting regional food brands.
The event was concluded with awarding the winners of the professional tourism competitions: "Gastronomic Impression / Taste Experience 2020", "Tourism Brand: Best Practices 2020", "Best Tourism Portal 2020", "Professional Competition of Guides, Tourist Maps and SMART Applications for Russia".