The Jamaica Food and Drink Festival (JFDF) will be held this year from September 30 to October 4th at various iconic venues throughout the city of Kingston. The event, traditionally held in the last week in October, is being moved forward in anticipation of the rescheduling of several other events to the last quarter of 2020.
Modelled after other international food festivals, JFDF is a five-day testament to the gastronomic ingenuity that resides in Jamaica and has catalysed Kingston’s evolving reputation as a foodie hub. Festival Director, Alicia Bogues, says, “We like to think of the Festival as ‘Jamaica Beyond Jerk’ as our events highlight everything that is great about Jamaica’s food scene from street food to five-star offerings.
“We are doing our part to build tourism given the growing trend of international travellers selecting their destination based on cultural experiences, in particular, sampling local cuisines. Of course, a major part in building out this tourism product is recognizing that Kingston, Jamaica’s cultural centre, is a vital part of our story. We are also encouraged by the fact that for the past two years we have had reports from our partner hotels of more and more persons travelling in to attend the Festival.”
The much-anticipated Jamaica Food and Drink Festival, which sees some 70 Jamaican and international chefs, has also become a must-do on the local social calendar. According to Bogues, “The earlier dates have been selected to ensure that more patrons are afforded the opportunity to experience the Festival, given that many events are currently being rescheduled to October and November.”
The JFDF is both endorsed and supported by the Government of Jamaica through the Ministry of Tourism as well as the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Jamaica Tourist Board, the Tourism Enhancement Fund and the Jamaica Hotel & Tourism Association. The Festival attracts partnerships over a wide cross-section of the food, beverage and entertainment industries.