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If you’re in the mood for Jamaican food, head to Brampton for a tasty treat. Try jerk lobster with pasta at Xaymaca Restaurant and Jamaican patties at TinNel’s.CITY OF BRAMPTON

Few other cities in the country feature as high a level of diversity as Brampton does, with residents coming from many different cultures and speaking dozens of different languages.

According to census data, Brampton has a population of almost 600,000 people, making it the ninth largest city in Canada and the fourth largest in Ontario.

It has the second highest growth rate among Canada’s 25 largest cities, at 13.3 per cent, adding 14,000 residents per year, on average.

Brampton also has the fourth largest visible minority population in the country. Fifty-two per cent of Brampton’s population are immigrants, and 50 per cent of new immigrants to Brampton are under the age of 24,

The top 10 places of birth for immigrants are India, Jamaica, Pakistan, Philippines, Guyana, Sri Lanka, United Kingdom, Portugal, Trinidad & Tobago, and Vietnam.

Not surprisingly, tourism strategy reflects multiculturalism in the city, says Laura Lukasik, manager of tourism and special events for the City of Brampton. Lukasik has been with the city for five years and, in that time, has seen those population numbers increase, she says.

“There are a lot of multicultural events happening across the whole spectrum,” she says. “People want to get together and have events and celebrate. It’s quite amazing. We’re running out of spaces and dates for people making requests for events this year. I have been spending my time looking at where we could have additional events.”

Brampton has a council-approved tourism strategy that focuses on diversity and how it can share that with residents and visitors to the city. It is guided by a five-year plan to continue to evolve into a cultural hotspot, specifically centred on arts and culture, food tourism, special events and attractions, and sport tourism. The city looks at this as a key strategy around recovering from the economic impacts of COVID-19.

When it comes to food, Brampton is truly unique. The city has a multicultural population proud to share unique tastes and authentic dishes from around the globe. Local eateries deliver the tastes of home for transplants, and young chefs create innovative dishes that source their cultural roots, helping to make the city special, Lukasik says.

Many first-generation Canadians’ meals took the traditions, ingredients and techniques from their home countries, but, when combined with the new tastes they found around them, inspired the fusion dishes the city is becoming well-known for.

“You can literally eat your way around the world here; there are so many options,” Lukasik says.

A drive down Kennedy Road is all one needs for an education into the city’s bustling food scene. Just a few examples include: Vinayagar Vilas, one of a number of Tamil restaurants which offers vegetarian and vegan cooking; Pepper Shack, which specializes in homestyle Caribbean food; Village of India Sweets & Restaurant, which is also vegetarian; the family-run Che Thuy Nga, which is known for its banh mi Vietnamese sandwiches; Jamaican fare can be found at the family-owned Xaymaca Restaurant and TinNel’s specializes in Jamaican patties; and MJ’s BBQ & Suya features home-style cooking of African origin.

Carabram, a multicultural festival held in July that is celebrating its 40th anniversary, brings together Brampton’s cultures and communities through food, entertainment and education. There are different pavilions with various cultural displays and artifacts that give visitors a cultural experience from such countries as India, Pakistan, Myanmar, Ukraine, Italy, Poland, Philippines and more.

Brampton is also home to many sporting events popular in different countries, such as karate and cricket. At those, you might also get to sample the fare at concessions and food trucks that showcase the countries from where these sports are popular.

Few cities depict Canada’s multicultural identity as well as Brampton, where visitors can learn about cultures from around the world right here at home.

Advertising feature produced by Globe Content Studio. The Globe’s editorial department was not involved.

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