We position FIBEGA as an authentic and gastronomic tourism event in constant evolution and which is relatively new to the general public.
I sat down with Javier Palencia, CEO of FIBEGA with headquarters in Miami, Florida, and that has had the great fortune to call this city home for over twenty years. Following several years at companies such as SIEMENS, Levitan &Palencia Agency, and at The Spain-US Chamber of Commerce, he is now part of the team responsible for bringing this innovative and exciting event to Miami.
What will FIBEGA bring to American travelers?
In the United States there’s a considerable amount of gastronomic knowledge but not very much about gastronomy and its origin. With an event such as FIBEGA we aim to give the American foodie a unique gastronomic experience to allow it to understand the products and their place of origin while exploring destinations. Providing the knowledge to further motivate travelers while they discover for themselves these products in their origin.
It’s essential to create an appreciation for gastronomy beyond the mass product consumed in your home country. Sampling international cuisine in your day to day is common, but the experience of tasting that cuisine in the country of origin is more authentic. When traveling you acquire that culture that allows you to further appreciate the value and the quality of those products and those dishes in their purest essence. Unadulterated. As always, In its origin the flavors are more intense.
For the professional public, travel agencies and tour operators, what does FIBEGA offer?
In the vast world of Gastronomy Tourism there are many important factors like destinations, transport companies, restaurants, travel agency and tour operators. They all play a key role in the development of the destination. FIBEGA Miami unites these fundamental segments of the industry to learn from each other as well as encourage collaborations and business building. When these vital relationships are created, the tourism sector increases and adds value to all elements of the industry.
Our mission is to provide professionals with new experiences, beyond adventure, leisure and tourism. We are going to offer innovative products and new approaches for known and unknown destinations but from a gastronomic perspective.
Is it only possible to savor international cuisine while traveling?
Unfortunately, we are not always able to travel to exotic destinations to try new flavors. For that we have wonderful restaurant choices close to home. In Miami, it’s important to recognize that in recent years many restaurants have raised the level and are offering excellent fusions and variations of international cuisine such as Colombian, Peruvian, Japanese, Argentinian, Spanish, French, Italian, Greek, and Brazilians amongst many more. There is a significant appetite from consumers and the restaurateurs are listening and satisfying that need.
At this moment, where is gastronomy tourism in the traveler’s mind?
We are witnessing a current boom in the sector. The interest of the general public for gastronomy tourism is extremely significant all over the world. We know that the United States is one of the largest emitters of tourists looking to discover new flavors. The world of gastronomy tourism is constantly evolving and with a substantial potential for growth. It’s a very dynamic sector in which new features are constantly offered for the professional to expand its market. And, of course, the traveler has a need to be informed of these developments in choosing their next destination with a more refined awareness.