By Andria Kades
The Cyprus Breakfast, an initiative launched in Paphos and Polis last year to promote local food products will branch out to the whole of the island as of next week.
Due to the popularity and success of the scheme, the Cyprus Tourism Organisation (CTO) will be inviting hotels to discuss whether they are able to implement the initiative at this stage and what support they might need, according to the programme coordinator Savvas Maliotis.
“We have had very positive results since last year and the Cyprus Breakfast has now become a part of hotel culture,” for all 17 participating resorts, he added.
The two main areas that hotels were assisted with was giving the products improved presentation and attention. For example, fact sheets next to certain foods and suggestions on pairing different items.
Unlike the set definition of an English or an Irish breakfast that comprises bacon and eggs with other slightly varied deviations when it comes to the extras such as baked beans or no baked beans, black pudding or sausages, the Cypriot Breakfast is more of a mix-and-match affair, using a variety of local produce. The only definition is that the products must be locally produced and it is suggested they are combined in a traditional manner such as halloumi and watermelon, or anari and honey.
“While hotels may have offered carob and anari, they may have been at different corners of the buffet. I know it sounds obvious but we told them to put them next to each other and have a display saying that the two are eaten together. Since then, visitors have been consuming both products,” Maliotis said.
Applicants submit a portfolio outlining which products they will offer, from a pre-determined list that has the flexibility of adding further suggestions as long as they are suitably justified. They could also include standard products as long as they were from a local producer.
“For example, they could have bananas, oranges or any other fruits but there would need to be a display next to it saying which area it came from.“
Once the application is approved, they receive training for the Cyprus gastronomy culture and how the breakfast can be prepared, utilised and combined with other products.
Combining foods is an important element to encouraging tourists to try new things that they may have never seen before. “One hotel would offer walnut sweets. They had it in a nice jar but no one would touch it. We suggested they cut the walnut into smaller pieces and put it with yoghurt. Since then it has become very popular,” Maliotis said.