Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey, Councillor John Scott with Neil McMurray (Village Butcher, Parkgate), Lynda Willis (WorldHost trainer), Daniel Harvey (Daniel’s at Tweedies) and Cathy Chauhan (Lough Neagh Eels)
Representatives from the local tourism industry attended a WorldHost Food Ambassador Workshop in Newtownabbey recently, sponsored by Tourism NI and Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council.
Key players in the food industry were examined and the role that local accommodation, attractions and restaurant staff have in promoting Northern Ireland’s food to the increasing visitor numbers coming to the Borough. Stories behind some of the area’s local products were shared as well as the opportunity to taste them. Local food producers including Cathy Chauhan from Lough Neagh Eels, described how the eels are caught and the increasing popularity of this local fish. At lunchtime, everyone got an opportunity to taste this local delicacy. Neil McMurray from the Village Butcher in Parkgate, who provides the beef and pork used by Daniel’s, explained the aging process involved in preparing his meat products.
The Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey, Councillor John Scott explained: “The Council is delighted to fund the first ever Food Ambassador Programme in the Borough and this unique programme has enabled the local industry to give a warm ‘foodie’ welcome to visitors from home and abroad.”
Louise McKinstry, Tourism NI Industry Development Officer added: “We are delighted that the Council are supporting the WorldHost Food Ambassador programme and the participation of Daniel’s at Tweedies. The importance of our food and drink staff in promoting local produce cannot be underestimated and equipping them with the tools to do so, benefits us all. This practical customer service also allows tourism and hospitality businesses to build on the success of the Year of Food and Drink 2016”.