GFTA Member Highlight – Key West Food Tours

GFTA Members Highlighted, Last updated September 25, 2018 - by Randi Alexander


The Global Food Tourism Association was started to bridge a much needed gap between education and the Food Tourism Industry. Many of our membership have been with GFTA since the very inception and we want to showcase their successes. This month’s feature is Analise Smith, Owner of Key West Food Tours. See what Analise has to say about her time as a member of GFTA, what she’s looking forward to this year at GFTC and a bit about her businesses growth.



    1. 1. What is the most beneficial part of attending GFTA’s Annual Conference, GFTC?
    2. The networking. Meeting food tourism operators from all over the world has been by far the most beneficial part of attending GFTC. The conference is only two days, but the relationships formed during that short time have turned into long lasting friendships.

2. If you could explain to a GFTA non-member why they should become a part of GFTA, what would you say?
GFTA is a community that has your back. I believe the forum has the most value. To be able to share ideas, questions, and concerns instantly with a group of colleagues that know exactly what you are going through is incredible. No matter what level your business is in, whether you have already jumped the specific hurdle and can offer advice, are currently facing the issue and receiving the advice, or have not yet reached that issue, but when you do, you’ll have the tools to succeed from someone who has already passed it is incredible and the forum provides that.

3. You’ve been working closely with our Educational Partners, Cultivate Advisors. Can you tell us what has been most impactful first for you as a leader and secondly for your business growth?
I have grown not only myself, but my business immensely this past year working with Cultivate Advisors. As a leader, I have confidence to guide my team to success. Working with Dave, my coach, has helped me to learn the skills necessary to manage employees, something I had no expertise in. As for my business, we’ve been working on the financials and sales, and I’m looking forward to what 2019 has in store using the foundations that have been put into place this year.

4.Thinking through all the GFTC’s you have attended, is there one takeaway that has stuck with you more than all the others?
Form relationships! This is the best thing you can do for your business, whatever stage it might be in. Having friends that you can talk shop with that are in the same industry as you can propel you to success. For me, it’s not just about learning things to help my business grow. It’s also about my emotional well-being of the company. I am a single owner-operator, and it can sometimes feel lonely to not have a business parter to run ideas off of. Having someone to talk to who knows how you feel is priceless!

5. What are you looking forward to most about GFTC18?
Seeing all of my food tour amigos, meeting new ones and of course, Austin & BBQ!

6. What is your favorite part about being in the Global Food Tourism community?
If you can’t already see a theme forming here, for me it’s all about the people! Yes, we can learn new tricks of the trade, crunch numbers, and keep up with the latest trends, but the most value is in the people. That’s where the real magic is.

7. The four pillars of GFTA’s mission are Network, Learn, Share, Succeed. Do you feel like GFTA truly helps Food Tourism Professionals achieve these pillars of growth?
GFTA’s mission of Network, Learn, Share, Succeed is really helping businesses in the food tourism industry accomplish their goals. Their forum is an amazing medium to share information and ideas. Of course the networking is my favorite part, but they also have seminars available to learn more, and it all connects to give you the tools to succeed!

So happy that Analise has found GFTA to be beneficial and we are proud to see her succeeding so greatly in the industry. Join Analise at 2018 Global Food Tourism Conference, network with her and other peers and learn a bit more as she helps lead a discussion with Dave Leveque of Cultivate Advisors on Financial Power in The Art of Making More Money [Master-Class Workshop] on Monday at GFTC18.


See the 2018 Agenda here.