Food and gastronomy (F&G) are increasingly recognized as potentially determinant elements for the sustainable development of places. A commonly held theory in many research fields is that F&G can contribute to the economic, social and environmental sustainability of places while potentially representing elements that increase those places’ attractiveness and competitiveness. This literature review investigates three main research streams: agriculture and rural studies, place branding and place marketing and food tourism. The aim is to reduce the research fragmentation by offering a more holistic perspective on how F&G are understood in different research areas to identify common and transversal elements that might represent the core of F&G’s potential for place development. These areas have been analysed to identify common, recurrent and significative local F&G resources. Significance in this context indicates that the identified local F&G resources have emerged as meaningful at the local and global levels; that is, they are embedded in the place (spatially and culturally) and are able to identify and differentiate the place in global competition. The analysis reveals that all local F&G resources that support place distinctiveness and attractiveness should also address and strengthen the link between the place (territorial/geographical dimensions) and the people (cultural dimensions).
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