News, 10 Apr 2014Mary Jane Edleson on Sustainable Tourism

RCBUS member Mary Jane Edleson of Slow Food Bali continues to share her passion for authentic food, truly a Vocational Service – one of Rotary’s several Avenues of Service. She recently spoke at a local conference on Sustainable Tourism in Indonesia.  Catriona Mitchell of Ubud Now and Then gave this report…

Mary Jane Edleson, Slow Food Bali

Mary Jane Edelson speaking

Mary Jane Edelson

Ubud’s own Mary Jane Edleson stated that because Bali has the international reputation for offering experiences of healing and wellbeing – this being a key part of the island’s image – visitors therefore come here to experience the beauty of nature, along with a desire to taste local food. This provides a business opportunity for the promotion of local ingredients – something that should be incorporated into hotel and restaurant marketing strategies island-wide.

Local food consumption, then, is not only about managing climate change in the future; it’s a marketing opportunity to bring in customers. Quite apart from presenting new, eclectic and interesting flavours to visitors, the use of local ingredients is an open display of social responsibility. Some restaurants in the US these days, Mary Jane said, even put photos of farmers on the menus to demonstrate that they know exactly where they’re sourcing their ingredients. This way the customer not only gets a personal touch, but a feel-good factor in participating in sustainable food production. “There is a world-wide movement of people wanting authenticity,” she said, “and I feel that food is one of the best ways.”

Read Catriona’s full report on all four speakers.

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