Sunday’s Saginaw News had a brief feature on culinary tourism that says a recent survey from the Travel Industry Association found Michigan ranked in the top 15 states for food and in the top 12 for wine-related travel. The survey found that 27 million travelers (17%) include culinary adventures in their trips and defined the culinary segment as those who make leisure travel decisions based on wine and food activities, planning around restaurants, wineries, cooking classes, farmers markets and food or wine festivals.
The article quotes David Lorenz of Travel Michigan as saying:
“Culinary travel is a natural for Michigan. Our agricultural base is very diverse, we have a well-regarded and growing wine industry, we are surrounded by Great Lakes and enjoy fresh and smoked fish – we have all the ingredients for wonderful food and wine experiences.”
Recent figures show that 800,000 visitors spent $8.6 million at the 50 wineries across the state, and I learned this weekend that Michigan is the second most agriculturally diverse state in the US.