Hong Kong’s flagship food show has attracted 260 exhibitors, about 10 percent fewer than last year, after the ongoing street protests forced organizers to move the venue, Ming Pao Daily reported Friday, citing the Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB).
Forty participants, mostly small Hong Kong food retailers, withdrew from the Wine & Dine Festival because of the high cost of relocating to the new venue in the former Kai Tak airport from Central which has been cut off by the nearly three-week-old protests.
However, 20 new exhibitors have signed up, including 15 Michelin-star resturants, five more than last year.
HKTB expects the number of visitors to match last year’s 150,000. The event will be held from Oct. 30 to Nov. 2.
Chairman Peter Lam said exhibitors spent a combined HK$40 million (US$5.16 million) last year and the figure is expected to rise because of added relocation costs.
This year, about HK$3 million to HK$4 million has been allocated for promotion alone, including the cost of 200,000 flyers in residential estates and display items in hotels in Kowloon district.
HKTB is working with cruise operators to jointly promote the fair to 2,000 cruise passengers arriving on Nov. 1 at the Kai Tak Cruise Terminal.
Complimentary shuttle bus services will be provided from Lam Tin, Kowloon Tong and Tsim Sha Tsui East MTR stations.
Bus operators and mini-bus companies have been asked to increase trips to the exhibition area.
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