‘Traditional food can preserve culture’

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THE food industry should foster promotion and safeguarding of a country’s culture and promote tourism, a restaurant proprietor has said.

ENTERTAINMENT REPORTER

Nyasha Mafusire, manager of PaRoots Restaurant at the corner of Kaguvi Street and Robert Mugabe Road was speaking after hosting Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) chief executive Karikoga Kaseke, Home Affairs minister Kembo Mohadi and musician Oliver Mtukudzi on Friday.

“The food industry is one of the major drivers of the tourism industry and that can only happen when we make sure we preserve methods of preparing traditional dishes,” Mafusire said.

“A tourist gets to understand a people from the food they eat and so we cannot hope to impress when we serve lasagne in Africa.”

Mafusire also thanked Kaseke for the support that ZTA has rendered for the restaurant.

She said it was important for tourism players to work hand in hand with ZTA so that their initiatives were in sync with their projects.

PaRoots offers a variety of traditional dishes and since opening in January, it has hosted various celebrities.

During the second edition of the Harare International Carnival, the restaurant also hosted Miss Carnival contestants and coached them on the importance of traditional meals.

Traditional food restaurants keep sprouting in the Harare with more people shunning fast foods.

What has been of concern, however, are the standards that keep falling while some charge exorbitant prices as high as between $15 and $20.

Another cause for concern has been the quality of food owing to lack of attention to detail.

Mafusire, however, said at PaRoots they had made it a point that the bulk of the food they cooked was produced at their farm.

“There have been complaints of some restaurants serving off layers instead of ‘road runner’ chicken, but we make sure we get our chicken from the
farm as well as proper preservation.”

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