In search of Nordicity: how new Nordic cuisine shaped destination branding in Copenhagen
Ooi, CS and Pedersen, JS, In search of Nordicity: how new Nordic cuisine shaped destination branding in Copenhagen, Journal of Gastronomy and Tourism, 2, (4) pp. 217-231. ISSN 2169-2971 (2017) [Refereed Article]
This article looks at the branding of Copenhagen as a food destination through the advent of the New
Nordic Cuisine movement and how this may change the way we think about destination branding.
The destination management organization of Copenhagen opportunistically embraced the New Nordic
Cuisine concept, which then posed several destination branding challenges. The first challenge
is that a destination brand should accentuate the authenticity and uniqueness of the locality to distinguish
the destination from competition. Branding a destination as part of a region, in this case "New
Nordic Cuisine," questions the brandís usefulness in relation to the branding of a specific city. The
second challenge is concerned with the "local turn," using local and seasonal produce as the main
focus in branding the New Nordic Cuisine. This concept is neither new nor original and can be easily
adapted for other places, thus questioning the "uniqueness" of the destination branding. The article
addresses these challenges and shows, first, how a vague and ambiguous term like "Nordic" can be a
focal point for local and international audiences; and second, that the brand message issue is not what
is authentically or uniquely Danish but what others imagine an authentic and unique Denmark to be.
The study points to an emergent and opportunistic, transterritorial strategy in destination branding
built largely on accreditation and a global recognition that is vague and even inaccurate. The article
reports findings from an inductive, in-depth, longitudinal study of the New Nordic Cuisine and its
movementís development in relation to branding Copenhagen as a tourism destination.
food tourism, destination branding, Copenhagen, gastronomy, New Nordic Cuisine