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NI Tourism Minister launches Year of Food in the Netherlands

Finola O'Mahony, Tourism Ireland’s head of Europe; Joery Castel, head chef at the Boat House Restaurant in Bangor; and Minister Bell.

Finola O’Mahony, Tourism Ireland’s head of Europe; Joery Castel, head chef at the Boat House Restaurant in Bangor; and Minister Bell.

Newly-appointed Norther Ireland Tourism Minister Jonathan Bell has launched NI’s Year of Food 2016 in the Netherlands on Sunday, 17th May, at an event organised by Tourism Ireland in Amsterdam, attended by Dutch food writers and tour operators.

Minister Bell told the Dutch audience about the quality of ingredients, chefs, restaurants and cookery schools, as well as the rich food heritage, found in Northern Ireland.

Joery Castel, originally from the Netherlands, and now head chef at the Boat House Restaurant in Bangor, also addressed the guests – describing fresh produce and his own food experience in Northern Ireland.

2016 will be Northern Ireland’s Year of Food, giving more tourists an appetite to visit the region. Tourism Ireland will be taking every opportunity to highlight and celebrate the food scene, promoting Northern Ireland’s food in the Netherlands and elsewhere around the world.

The launch in Amsterdam was organised to coincide with the inaugural KLM flight from Amsterdam to Belfast, which will undoubtedly help boost leisure and business travel from the two cities. It is also good news for tourism from other countries, as Amsterdam is a key European hub, with KLM offering connections via Amsterdam from other European countries, North America, Asia and the Middle East.

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