Etivity 3 – Sustainable gastronomic tourism in Gokceada, Turkey

Group members: Matilde Guido, Xiaojiao Yang (Joy), Tjasa Rahne, Vladimira Sajbanova, Maria Kavazidou.

Chosen Case Study: sustainable gastronomic tourism in Gokceada, Turkey.


Gokceada is the largest island of Turkey and it is a rural district. The island has a great touristic potential both for its natural resources and for the effort of managing them in best way possible. Indeed, the island was able to merge its two main resources, tourism and agriculture, in order to build a competitive advantage as a tourist destination.

Gokceada has developed, in the last few years, organic production for two main reasons: to support the local agricultural industry and to develop a strategy of differentiation, enhancing the destination attractiveness. Particularly, it has gained certificate of organic production for the three main crops of the island: olives; grapes; honey. The cost of these certificate were shared among the several producers of the island for each crop in order to reduce cost per unit. The use of local and authentic food along the development of a valorization of its production is contributing to support agricultural activity and to enhance the economic situation, thanks to the increased destination attractiveness and the rise of price per units of the agricultural production. At the same time, the development of organic production is contributing to the development of the island as a sustainable gastronomic destination.

Moreover, the attention demonstrated from the rural district of Gokceada for sustainability was pointed out through the membership of Gokceada into the association CittàSlow. CittàSlow, which means slow city, is an international network of towns that meet some particular requirements and it is part of the international organization Slow Food. As a member of the network the town agrees to work toward some goals in order to increase the life conditions of its citizens and its tourists. Furthermore, the overall goals meet sustainability requirements through the request of maintaining the developing the characteristics of the territory.


Proposal of research questions:

  1. To what extent is the local community involved and supporting the process of creating a gastronomic destination? Does the destination image reflect the authentic identity of the local population?

  2. Has the participation in CittàSlow network increased the tourism in the destination? Which are the impacts for the local population?

  3. How can Gokceada fully exploit its resources in order to become a gastronomic tourism destination? To what extent the gastronomic tourism industry can grow and still be sustainable? How can the sustainable growth be managed without damaging the local culture?

2 Responses to “Etivity 3 – Sustainable gastronomic tourism in Gokceada, Turkey”

  1. Janne Liburd says:

    Interesting case. I am struggling with understanding how you can answer your proposed research questions. How will you measure the ‘extent’ of community involvement, participation increase? What does it mean to ‘fully exploit’?
    Keep refining these and keep up the good work.

  2. Janne Liburd says:

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