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ADDING VALUE WITH EXPERIENCES: INDUSTRIAL TOURISM AND GEOTHERMAL FOOD PRODUCTION

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ToSEE Tourism in Southern and Eastern Europe, Vol. 5, pp. 507-520, 2019
B. Pavlakovič, M. Turnšek: ADDING VALUE WITH EXPERIENCES: INDUSTRIAL TOURISM AND ...
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ADDING VALUE WITH EXPERIENCES: INDUSTRIAL
TOURISM AND GEOTHERMAL FOOD PRODUCTION
Barbara Pavlakovič
Maja Turnšek
https://doi.org/10.20867/tosee.05.39
Abstract
Purpose The study presents examples of good practice, which use innovative tourism products
to extend their visiting season. These destinations are Island and Slovenia. Both countries have
their high season in summer due to more agreeable weather conditions and warmer climate. Hence,
the need for the prolonged season provided creative ideas, like transforming production factories
into tourist attractions, and furthermore transform mere sightseeing of these premises into tourism
experiences.
Methodology The paper introduces a case study of two companies from South Iceland is
Friđheimar and from Slovenia company Paradajz d.o.o. The case study was delivered through in-
depth interviews with the company representatives and field observation in the factory tour itself.
It supplied data about both providers and their industrial tourism practices with which
benchmarking analysis was made.
Findings The results suggest that such tourism products focus mostly on the education and
aesthetics dimension of experience design, while escapism and entertainment dimension remain a
challenge together with the challenge of overall theming of sustainability and geothermal energy.
However, use of industrial tourism products has been a success in extending the tourist season into
colder months and adding value to the business model.
Contribution The study also highlights the issue of sustainability while both companies use
geothermal energy to heath their greenhouses. The use of green energy is a contribution to
sustainable development of tourism. Authors propose to promote further intertwinement of
innovation and sustainability as presented in this case study in order to create a richer tourism
experience.
Keywords Industrial tourism, experience economy, geothermal energy, innovative tourism
products, experience design
INTRODUCTION
Tourism as an important economic sector contributes to socio-economic progress, but
the residents’ well-being depends on the quality of the tourism offer and on the revenues,
it produces (UNWTO, n.d.a). However, tourism is strongly affected by seasonality,
which causes higher revenues and lower quality of life in high season and lower revenues
but better quality of life in lower season. Seasonality can be defined as a temporal
imbalance in the phenomenon of tourism, which may be expressed in terms like the
number of visitors, expenditure of visitors, traffic on the highways and other forms of
transportation, employment and admission to attractions (Butler 2001, 5). Seasonality
has long been an important topic in the field of tourism studies (Bar-On, 1975) and it is
still one of the issues that intrigue the tourism industry (Rossello and Sanso 2017;
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Turrión-Prats and Duro 2018; Ferrante, Lo Magno, and De Cantis 2018). It is also
recognized by European Commission (2007, 2010, 2015) by specific programs
encouraging an extension of the tourist season and hence stimulating competitiveness in
the European tourism sector.
Ferrante, Lo Magno, and De Cantis (2018) highlight the effects of seasonality, which
extent from economic effects (the inefficient use of tourism resources, the overcrowding
of destinations and attractions during peak demand periods and lack of capacity,
increases in prices in the peak season, with a negative impact on a consumer's perception
of value and seasonality in the labour market), environmental effects (damage to
vegetation and fauna, disturbance of water supply and waste management) to
sociocultural effects (a negative impact on residents due to overcrowding and lack of
destination's resources for themselves). As Butler (2014) suggested, there are a number
of actions which can be taken to diminish the effects of seasonality, for example
extending the season, offering different attractions out of season, revamping the
destination, making the destination unique and prestigious, adding a second main season
or adding non-conventional tourist attractions. The main focus in therefore on creating
an innovative tourism products and experiences that will attract tourists through the
whole year and extend the tourist season from its summer or winter peaks.
Based on these findings the main objective of the study is to present two case studies that
offer new types of tourism, which can be regarded as tourist season extenders. First case
study is from Iceland, European country located on an island in the North Atlantic Ocean,
and the second case study is from Slovenia, southern Central Europe country. Iceland
has experienced a continuous increase in the number of visitors for the last three decades
and has witnessed an almost exponential growth in inbound tourism since 2010 (Gil-
Alana and Huijbens 2018). Authors demonstrate that the highest values have been
obtained in the months of July and August. Baum and Lundtorp (2001) argue that
seasonality is important issue for cold-climate environments like Iceland and that they
have to extend existing tourist season (e. g. from summer to September) and develop
tourism on new markets (e. g. for seniors or festival lovers). Similarly, Slovenian tourism
has also a strong seasonal character, which marks high season in summer months from
May until October (Šegota and Mihalič 2018). Hence, the need for the prolonged season
at these destinations inspired creative ideas like transforming production factories into
tourist attractions and furthermore transform mere sightseeing of these premises into
tourism experiences. The paper aims to present industrial tourism at both destinations,
starting with the literature review of industrial tourism and experience economy
concepts, followed by its innovative intertwinement with sustainable practices such as
using geothermal energy.
1. INNOVATIVE TOURISM PRODUCT INDUSTRIAL TOURISM
Readiness for novelty is a driving force of western world since people accept and seek
innovation in industry, education, family life, the arts, social relationships, and the like
(Goeldner and Ritchie 2003). This change of the social climate is noticeable also in travel
demand as people move away from the traditional resorts to new and unfamiliar places
or to places that offer innovative tourism products. Innovation is described in the terms
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of newness, focus and attributes (Hall and Williams 2008) or with the words of Kanter
(in Hall and Williams 2008) innovation refers to the process of bringing any new,
problem solving idea into use. Innovation is the generation, acceptance and
implementation of new ideas, processes, products or services. Hence the capacity to
change and adapt is central to development and firms that can read, anticipate, and
respond to the specific needs and desires of high-quality niche or special-interest markets
in innovative ways will have great opportunities for success (Goeldner and Ritchie
2003). Innovation is important for the whole tourism sector, whether in transport,
entertainment or hospitality, at local or national level while the source of innovation often
lies outside the sector itself (Hall and Williams 2008). Examples are improved air
transport and the emergence of World Wide Web, which were originally developed for
the military purposes. On the other hand, tourism sets new trends like promoting exotic
cuisines or developing sharing economy.
One of the innovative trends is also a tourism product of industrial tourism, where tourists
visit a factory, enter a tour and are acquainted with its production and its products.
Industrial tourism is dynamic, interactive and different from usual forms of tourism since
its focus are technology and knowledge that become the key innovative elements that
draw most tourist attention (Jing 2012). Industrial tourism is defined by several authors
(Frew 2000; Robinson in Jafari 2003; Otgaar, Van den Berg, Berger and Xiang Feng
2010; Vargas-Sánchez, Porras-Bueno and Plaza-Mejía 2014) as visits to companies,
where productive activity is actually happening, to witness production processes in
motion, to taste / experience the products or to learn about company’s history. This kind
of industrial tourism can be described as active industrial tourism (Rodríguez-Zulaica
2017). Meanwhile industrial tourism also encompasses visits to inoperative and
abandoned industrial heritage sites, which can be defined as industrial heritage tourism
(Hospers 2002).
Although industrial tourism is not a new activity and companies have hosted visitors
even back in the late 19 / early 20 century (Frew 2000; Marsh 2008; MacCannell 2013),
it is attaining increasing importance nowadays as a part of the cultural heritage in a
growing number of destinations. Active or industrial heritage tourism is attractive to
tourist since it represents a special on-site experience. Jia (2010) proposes that the
concept of experience could be introduced into industrial tourism program design as its
essence to create a special and interesting tourism experience to satisfy tourists’ sensory
and mental needs.
2. EXPERIENCE ECONOMY IN INDUSTRIAL TOURISM
Pine and Gilmore (1998, 1999) claim that the last few decades have brought about a new
stage in the economic progress from service economy into experience economy where
“work is theatre and every business a stage” (Pine and Gilmore 1999). Adding
experiences seems to be the current answer to the question of the ever-progressing search
for adding value and thus increasing the price and distinguishing one’s offer from the
competition. Pine and Gilmore claim that not only tourism businesses for whom staging
is the essential part of their business model (e.g. theme parks such as Disneyworld), but
also other businesses are more and more in the business of staging experiences, thus
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supporting the trend of the increase of the industrial tourism whereby businesses not only
strive to sell commodities, goods or services, but also adding experiences. To take their
famous “cake metaphor”, in the experience economy parents neither make the birthday
cake nor even throw the party. Instead, they spend $100 or more to “outsource” the entire
event to a business that stages a memorable event for the kids and often throws in the
cake for free (Pine and Gilmore 1998).
If we apply Pine and Gilmore’s (1998) approach to metaphorically represent the
historical progression of adding value to the business of selling tomatoes, we can argue
that there are historically at least four types of tomato growing businesses that can
according to Pine and Gilmore be also understood as stages of economic development
(see Image 1).
Image 1: The progression of economic value in producing tomatoes
Source: Based on Pine and Gilmore 1998
If we apply Pine and Gimore’s “cake metaphor” to the case of tomatoes, we can argue
that in the agrarian economy, the added value was narrowed only to selling the
commodities tomatoes. As the goods-based industrial economy advanced, farmers and
other specialized companies added value by transforming tomatoes into standardized
products, for example canned tomatoes. Later, when the service economy took hold,
farmers also added services, such as preparing meals from the tomatoes. Finally, the
experience economy means that farmers add value through providing experiences
memorable events.
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An experience is defined by Pine and Gilmore (1998) as a result of the process in which
a company intentionally uses services as the stage, and goods as props, to engage
individual customers in a way that creates a memorable event (for example transforming
a taxi ride from a mere service of getting from point A to point B into an entertaining
event enjoyed for its own value). Pine and Gilmore (1998) were mostly concerned with
the question of how to design an experience in a way that “sells” and thus be staged in a
memorable way. They advise to theme the experience, harmonize impressions with
positive cues, eliminate negative cues, mix in memorabilia and engage all five senses.
While commodities, goods, and services are external to the buyer, experiences are
inherently personal, existing only in the mind of the guests deriving from the interaction
between the staged event (like a theatrical play) and the individual’s state of mind. Pine
and Gilmore propose two dimensions according to which experiences can be analysed.
The first is guest participation; the level to which guests affect the performance. The
second is immersion; the level of environmental relationship, that unites customers with
the event or performance. The two dimensions serve to sort experiences into four broad
categories or realms which themselves become dimensions of experiences, since some
attractions such as the Disney World, manage to include all four areas: entertainment,
education, escape and aesthetic dimension.
Adding experiences to farming has long been the domain of research interest in
agritourism, whereby the focus has been on adding experiences on smallholders’ farms.
They have mostly offered content such as local cuisine, animal petting and experiencing
life on the farm and in touch with nature and tradition. What this paper analyses,
however, is the new type of agritourism one that does not base on smallholding farmers,
but on high-tech hydroponic farming, where the operations are often more similar to
industrial tourism than to traditional agritourism farms, or are a combination of both.
3. INTERTWINEMENT OF INNOVATION AND SUSTAINABILITY
Ever since the Rio Earth Summit in 1992, tourism organizations promoted the
formulation of environmentally sound and culturally sensitive tourism programs as a
strategy for sustainable development (Spenceley, Kohl, McArthur, Myles, Notarianni,
Paleczny, Pickering and Worboys 2015). Sustainable development of tourism was
regarded as a balanced approach to economic, social and environmental development.
According to UNWTO (n.d.b) it can be defined as “Tourism that takes full account of its
current and future economic, social and environmental impacts, addressing the needs of
visitors, the industry, the environment and host communities”. As such sustainable
tourism should make optimal use of environmental resources while being ecological and
helping to conserve natural heritage and biodiversity; respect the socio-cultural
authenticity of host communities (built and living cultural heritage, traditional values);
ensure socio-economic benefits to all stakeholders (stable employment and income-
earning opportunities, social services and contributing to poverty alleviation) (World
Tourism Organization 2004).
When tourist destinations integrate sustainability in their core philosophy, they also
strive to be more innovative to accomplish sustainable criteria. Koščak (2018) suggests,
that they provide different tourist experiences that range from culture, art, sport, to
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gastronomy and relaxation. Next, they also target different target markets as potential
tourists. Destinations endeavour also for higher quality products that are environmental
friendly or even encourage tourist to act ecologically. One of sustainable and innovative
ways of providing tourism products is a tourism offer based on the use of geothermal
energy.
Geothermal energy in both Iceland and Slovenia has long had an important role in the
geothermal water based tourism. For both countries, this is the prime tourism product,
attracting high extent of tourists in geothermal spas and natural hot-water bathing areas.
Not much has been done, however, on finding other innovative ways of combining the
usage of geothermal energy with tourism. We thus see the shift towards combining
geothermal food production and tourism as a potentially important and innovative new
trend in finding other ways for geothermal use, and thus extending the sustainability of
the geothermal energy use.
4. USED METHODS
The paper introduces a case study of two companies from Iceland is Friđheimar
Company and from Slovenia Paradajz d.o.o company. The case study was delivered
firstly through interviews with the company representatives. Research question were sent
to them via e-mail and we got the responses from the responsible persons at the sites.
From Friđheimar we were in contact with its owner, and from Paradajz d.o.o we were in
contact with the visitors’ manager. As a second method we used a field observation in
the factory tour itself. Friđheimar Company tour took place in June 2018 and Paradajz
d.o.o Company took place in November 2018. We have also used secondary data from
statistical offices of Iceland and Slovenia. All the supplied data about both providers,
their industrial tourism practices and the general data about tourism figures in both
countries formed a pool for a final benchmarking analysis.
4.1. Site descriptions
The Icelandic company Fridheimar is a family owned company, with a yearly tomato
production of approx. 370 tons. They use geothermal energy for hydroponic production.
From initial small greenhouses, they increased their greenhouses to first 1 and later to
1.6 hectares, with the current state being more than 4 hectares. The first visitors’
greenhouse facilities were built in 2011, and extended in 2013 (see Image 2).
Additionally, the farm attracts tourist with an equestrian centre (Friedheimar 2019). The
farm is located within the so-called “Golden Circle” travel route in the south of Iceland,
thus giving it an important competitive advantage in attracting visitors.
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Image 2: Fridheimar tomato farm in Iceland
Source: Carlos Espinal 2018
Slovenian company Paradajz d.o.o is settled in the North East part of Slovenia, in
Prekmurje region. It was founded in 2007, but the expansion of the production and the
marketing boom started in 2012 with the launch of the tomato brand Lušt. From initial 4
hectare of greenhouses, they have grown to 9 hectare of greenhouses, where they grow
multiple varieties of tomatoes. The company employs approximately 50 people, but they
also cooperate in the Lušt association, where they combine forces with the local farmers,
who grow also other vegetables like garlic, onion, potato, cabbage and pepper. Paradajz
d.o.o is settled in the region with high geothermal potential and the company has its own
geothermal hole, which they use to heath greenhouses in the colder months (Paradajz
d.o.o. 2019). In April 2018, they have opened a visitor centre and a sample tomato
greenhouse where they offer guided visits and tomato tastings for visitors (see image 3).
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Image 3: Lušt sample tomato greenhouse in Slovenia
Source: Barbara Pavlakovič 2018
5. RESULTS
Industrial tourism in greenhouses offers a special insight into the production of
vegetables and fruits and also into use of geothermal energy. As such our first focus was
on the tourist product itself, how it addresses visitors and which experience dimensions
could we recognise. Our second interest was to study, how examined case studies dealt
with the seasonality.
5.1. Experiencing tomatoes
Islandic company Friđheimar offers visits to their greenhouses, their restaurant with a
bar, and the horse stables. Their main interest is to present and explain how tomatoes are
grown in Iceland both now and to some extent in history. The product shows the visitors
how they use the geothermal powers to grow food. This presents the foundation for their
restaurant and souvenir shop offer which is all together named a food experience. At
first, they welcomed only groups, but now they have also individual guests. Among them
are many students with their teachers but also just people who are visiting Iceland, taking
the route of the “Golden Circle” and lunch at Friđheimar. When groups arrive, they first
have a 10-15 minutes speech about how Friđheimar grows the tomatoes in Iceland with
the help of the nature and geothermal energy. Next, the visitors can have lunch if they
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prefer and many go to see the horses. Individual guests have a short presentation of the
place at the table before seeing the menu, while the company efforts are to provide a
good food experience for every guest.
The product is very much building on Pine and Gilmore’s (1998) advice to theme the
experience, with the overall theme being the tomatoes. The visitors can observe the
tomato production faculties while enjoying the sun at the restaurant inside of the
greenhouse. They can also learn about tomato and greenhouse production in Iceland
through history (if the group is guided via the guide, otherwise via the information
billboards). And most markedly, they can even try the local beer made partly from
tomatoes, with a cherry tomato floating in the glass itself. In terms of the four dimensions
of an experience (aesthetics, education, escapism and entertainment), the product builds
on the first two, but neglects the second two dimensions. Most emphasis is put on the
aesthetics dimension of the product with its main value proposition being the restaurant
and the bar positioned in the modern glass greenhouse environment. The guest can thus
enjoy the good mood or good food while having an overview of the tomato production
facilities behind the glass. The educational dimension is cared for either via guide
interpretation (in case of group visits), but the individual visitors are left to educate
themselves about the history of the farm of the greenhouse production via a number of
information billboards positioned within the visitors’ centre. However, we could not find
any signs of the entertainment or the escapism dimensions to be directly addressed within
the design of the product.
Much alike is the experience at Paradajz d.o.o. or to be precise at their so-called “Cute
homestead” (Luštna domačija). Visitors are welcomed to come to a shop / restaurant and
to visit a sample greenhouse since the production greenhouses are closed for the public.
The company’s goal is to present their tomato growing method with the use of
greenhouses, geothermal energy and natural substrate. They put emphasis on natural
growing methods like populating greenhouses with bumblebees for fertilization and not
using harmful spray preparations. Paradajz d.o.o. welcomes visitors of all ages, groups
and individuals. They have noticed that among visitors there are many primary and high
school groups, university students and general tomato lovers, who just want to learn
about the fruit. Visit lasts approximately one hour. Firstly, one of the guides takes the
visitors into a sample greenhouse where she presents the tomatoes and the growing
technique. Next, the visitors go to the restaurant, where they have tomato tasting, visit
tomato shop or order something from the bar.
Using field observation method we have learned about the experience Paradajz d.o.o.
provides for their visitors. First of all, accordingly to the objectives of the company, the
most noticeable is the education experience dimension. Visitors learn about different
varieties of tomatoes since the sample greenhouse hosts 100 tomato varieties from
small cherry tomato to big ox-heart tomato. Tomatoes are there to observe, touch and
taste since visitors can pick and eat any tomato they like from the sample greenhouse.
Guide also talks about the tomato varieties, the growing methods, and about the use of
geothermal energy. She also exposes the bumblebees and their beehives, which can be
seen among tomato plants. Gained tomato knowledge can be tested during the tomato
tasting in the restaurant, where the guide asks questions about the eaten varieties and
about visitors’ taste. Secondly, the aesthetics dimension is also highly perceptible. The
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company is set in the green soundings of Prekmurje region, full of fields and flora. Visitor
centre is new and tastefully constructed and arranged, and the greenhouse is full of
orderly grown tomato plants, providing captivating green and red colour mixture. The
greenhouse is due to its structure very bright and warm and very clean, since tomatoes
are grown from a substrate in a bag. Moreover, when tasting tomatoes in the restaurant,
the fruits are attractively presented on a serving plate, ready to be eaten. The shop is also
nicely arranged and offers different shades of red tomatoes. Hence, colours are the most
aesthetical element of this offer. Thirdly, the entertainment dimension is somewhat less
visible in the case of visiting Paradajz d.o.o. The guide’s speeches cannot be regarded as
fun, since they are much more educational and there is no other entertainer on the spot.
Perhaps the most amusing moment happens at the beginning of the visit, when the
visitors have to put on a coverall and protective slippers. Dressed up visitors in white
coverall and blue slippers can take photographs before entering the greenhouse and this
moment causes great laughter while making this “alien-like” pose. Finally, the escapist
dimension is also not distinguishable at the first moment. However, it can be noticeable
as a quest for authentic life of growing food and using land for humankind survival.
Visits to food production facility bring us back to our roots as farmers, and watching
other people grow tomatoes, gives us an experience of something extraordinary for
nowadays office workers. Even though in the Paradajz d.o.o. sample greenhouse there
are no farm workers, the glass walls of the greenhouse offer an insight into the production
greenhouses, where the employees can be seen during their actual work. In this way, the
visitors can participate in the escapist experiences.
5.2. Visitor seasons in greenhouses
Visitor season of a tourism destination is an important factor in managing the destination.
Therefore, our first goal was to examine the seasons in both countries Iceland and
Slovenia. We have gathered data from statistical offices for the years 2016, 2017 and
2018. Both countries are comparable regarding the number of visitors since in the year
2018 Iceland had 5,620,120 arrivals and Slovenia 5,624,474 arrivals, while the number
raised steadily over past years in both countries. Table 1 shows the monthly tourist
arrivals numbers for Iceland and Table 2 shows the monthly tourist arrivals numbers for
Slovenia.
Table 1: Monthly tourist arrivals numbers for Iceland
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
Jun
2016
129615
189743
232511
192123
617500
2017
205233
258735
299824
266145
645386
2018
226906
300697
337874
238953
677586
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Dec
2016
919677
840662
455576
293040
214057
2017
933515
832912
483179
333875
218236
2018
975404
962374
686936
370898
225141
Source: Statistics Iceland n.d.
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Table 2: Monthly tourist arrivals numbers for Slovenia
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
Jun
2016
212951
229763
249460
272384
382713
2017
230696
240027
269553
348812
487981
2018
249011
249170
324557
386441
570462
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Dec
2016
585044
676244
426699
326110
252296
2017
679743
765332
458824
365780
279010
2018
825363
943920
585659
423235
314475
Source: SURS n.d.
As the statistical data confirms, the high season on Iceland is the summer season (June,
July and August), representing over 51 % of all tourist arrivals in 2016 and slightly
descending to 47 % in 2018. The lowest season is the winter season (December, January
and February) with 12 % of all tourist arrivals in 2016 and slightly rising to 13 % in
2018. The spring season (March, April and May) with 16 % of all tourist arrivals in 2016
and with 17 % in 2018 is close to a bit stronger autumn season (September, October and
November) with 21 % of all tourist arrivals in 2016 and with 23 % in 2018.
Similarly, the high season in Slovenia is also the summer season with over 39 % of all
tourist arrivals in 2016 and slightly rising to 42 % in 2018. The lowest season is the
winter season with 17 % of all tourist arrivals in 2016 and slightly descending to 14 %
in 2018. The spring season represents 21 % of all tourist arrivals in 2016 and in 2018,
while the autumn season represents 23 % of all tourist arrivals in 2016 and in 2018.
Although the number slightly vary, when comparing both countries, Iceland proved to
be a bit more summer destination and Slovenia even though its high season is still
summer has more equally distributed arrivals among other three seasons. As the fact
that both counties are seasonal was verified, our study aimed to examine, if the
innovative tourism product like industrial tourism in tomato greenhouses could extend
the visiting season to other months. As company Friđheimar answered, their visiting
season is all year round, but the high season is approximately from May until October,
while November until January are being the slowest months. All together, they received
approximately 175.000 guests in 2018 and around 160.000 in 2017. Company Paradajz
d.o.o. answered that their visiting season lasts from March until December, while in
January and February there are no tomatoes to be seen. In 2018, their first year of
operation, they have noticed the biggest tourist demand in April, May and June, July and
August were a bit slow, followed by again more visited September, October, November
and December. Altogether, there were approximately 7.000 visitors in 2018.
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CONCLUSION
The results suggest that examined industrial tourism products focused mostly on the
education and aesthetics dimension of experience design, while escapism and
entertainment dimension remain a challenge. Facts about tomatoes and about growing
tomatoes were the centre point of both presentations since visitors seemed to value
greatly the extension of their tomato knowledge. Additionally, the aesthetics dimension
plays an important role in attracting visitors and creating positive atmosphere where
visitors enjoy spending their free time. Intensive colours, modern architecture and warm
greenhouse air are the main aesthetic charms. On the other hand, companies do not put
emphasis on escapism and entertainment dimension. The visited industrial tourism
products cannot be described as fun or self-expressing and therefore are missing two
dimension of full experience design. In order to provide memorable overall experience,
companies could offer entertainment in form of children game, a funny mascot,
humorous videos or something alike. In terms of escapism, tomato growing or cooking
classes could be offered, however there are plenty other opportunities to offer to the
visitors for their self-expression together with the overall theming of sustainability and
geothermal energy.
Our second focus was on seasonality. The use of industrial tourism products has been a
success in extending the tourist season into colder months and adding value to the
business model. Both countries Iceland and Slovenia are mostly summer season
destinations, while both tomato companies stated that their high season is not only
summer, but also spring and autumn. In fact, summer season is actually a bit slower
season for Slovenian company, while spring and autumn season being the busiest. This
research showed that tourists could be attracted to destinations also in other seasons
outside the main rush. Innovative tourism products are attractive and present an effective
pull moment for tourists.
Overall, important contribution of this study is also highlighting the issue of
sustainability while both companies use geothermal energy to heath their greenhouses.
The use of green energy could be another pull factor and a contribution to sustainable
development of tourism. Given these points, we propose to promote further
intertwinement of innovation and sustainability as presented in this case study in order
to create a richer tourism experience.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
This research was made under the Geofood project dissemination activity. The Geofood
project is supported through the ERANET Cofund GEOTHERMICA project (Project no.
731117), from the the European Commission, The Research Council in Iceland (Rannis),
Netherlands Enterprise Agency(RVO), the Ministry of Infrastructure and Ministry of the
Environment and Spatial Planning, Republic of Slovenia. The consortium partners
include Wageningen University & Research, LandIng Aquaculture, Ammerlaan
(Netherlands), University of Iceland, Samraekt (Iceland), University of Maribor and the
Municipality of Brežice (Slovenia).
ToSEE Tourism in Southern and Eastern Europe, Vol. 5, pp. 507-520, 2019
B. Pavlakovič, M. Turnšek: ADDING VALUE WITH EXPERIENCES: INDUSTRIAL TOURISM AND ...
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Barbara Pavlakovič, Teaching Assistant
University of Maribor, Faculty of Tourism
Cesta prvih borcev 36, 8250 Brežice, Slovenia
Phone: +386 8 205 6791
E-mail: barbara.pavlakovic@um.si
Maja Turnšek, PhD, Assistant Professor
University of Maribor, Faculty of Tourism
Cesta prvih borcev 36, 8250 Brežice, Slovenia
Phone: +386 8 205 4010
E-mail: maja.turnsek@um.si
... This attracts new inhabitants and helps potentially abandoned areas to revitalise since old buildings can be reused, and new services for visitors and locals can emerge [25][26][27]. Industrial tourism can also help overcome seasonality effects, thus providing a yearlong tourism offer that will attract tourists throughout the year and secure more stable working positions [28]. Finally, at the time of COVID-19, tourism resilience has come into sharp focus. ...
... Greenhouse industries are demonstrating a new business model intertwined with tourism. Their innovative business model is grounded in experiential tourism and transformed into industrial tourism [28,48]. Pavlakovič and Turnšek [28] saw the shift towards combining geothermal food production and tourism as a potentially significant and innovative new trend in finding other forms of geothermal use and thus extending the sustainability of geothermal energy use, and as including industrial tourism to serve the educational or even transformational role in educating visitors regarding geothermal usage and extending public support to this type of sustainable energy. ...
... Their innovative business model is grounded in experiential tourism and transformed into industrial tourism [28,48]. Pavlakovič and Turnšek [28] saw the shift towards combining geothermal food production and tourism as a potentially significant and innovative new trend in finding other forms of geothermal use and thus extending the sustainability of geothermal energy use, and as including industrial tourism to serve the educational or even transformational role in educating visitors regarding geothermal usage and extending public support to this type of sustainable energy. ...
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... In this paper, the study is built on our previous research (Pavlakovič and Turnšek, 2019), whereby authors claim that geothermal energy has long had an important role in water-based geothermal tourism. The prime tourism product of many countries is attracting a great extent of tourists in geothermal spas and natural hot-water bathing areas. ...
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Both city and enterprise have an interest in industrial tourism development, but how can it be organized in such a way that the benefits outweigh the costs for both? By analyzing case studies of Wolfsburg, Cologne, Pays de la Loire, Turin, Shanghai and Rotterdam, this book provides an insight into the experiences of industrial tourism development in cities. © Alexander H.J. Otgaar, Leo van den Berg, Christian Berger and Rachel Xiang Feng 2010. All rights reserved.