The Malta Tourism Authority has announced the official ECO certification of the first seven certified farmhouses on the island of Gozo

The farmhouses are located in areas across the island, including Sannat, San Lawrenz, Xaghra and Xewkija.

The ECO certification was launched in 2002 for hotels, and in  2013 the scheme was extended for farmhouse accommodation. The scheme enables tourist to stay at a farmhouse that is recognised for its commitment towards he environment, therefore enticing more environmentally conscious travellers seeking local farmhouse lodgings operated in a sustainable manner.

The scheme has been designed specifically for local farmhouses to preserve the environment and aid the growth of the local tourism industry. Participating farmhouses are audited against a set of criteria designed to ensure the environmental, socio-economic and cultural sustainability of farmhosues on the Maltese islands. The national scheme has been recognised by the Global Sustainable Tourism Council as fully reflecting the GSTC criteria.

“The ECO certification initiative is another crucial step aimed at strengthening the development of sustainable tourism in Gozo. Not only are we a step closer to our eco island vision of 2020, we hope this scheme will increase tourism to our beautiful island as well as increased employment for Gozitans,” said Alex Incorvaja, Director UK & Ireland of the Malta Tourism Authority.