CEO of CDC Events & Travels Pvt Ltd and the head of organizing committee, Mr. Imran Hassan welcomed the public to the opening ceremony of the Food and Hospitality Asia Virtual Trade Fair 2021, today. It is the first international virtual trade fair held by the Trade Fair Organizer in Maldives and Sri Lanka. A total of 30 exhibitors participated in this event from Sri Lanka, Maldives, India, UAE, Australia, Taiwan, Thailand and several other countries. Apart from that, 1000 buyers registered for this event mainly from Maldives, India, Sri Lanka and other countries. These buyers made appointments through Artificial Intelligence technology to attend the fair from August 15 – August 19.
According to Mr. Imran Hassan, the event was planned and put in a very short period of time. He thanked Mr. Dishan Wijayawardena the Senior Business Development Manager of the principal sponsor Nestlé who has been a big support in the previous years during the physical events up until now as well. He also thanked the President of the Chefs Guild of Maldives, Mrs. Mariyam Noordeen and the Chief Judge Mr. Abdulla Sobah and his team also from the Chefs Guild of Maldives for helping with the culinary competition. 50 participants have taken part in the culinary competition from over 10 resorts and 10 countries.
He also showed his gratitude to Mr. Dimuthu Kumarasinghe, the President of Chefs Guild of Lanka, his team and several other chefs for helping to put the event together. He added “I hope to continue several other trade fairs in this line and I believe this is the opportunity for all the exhibitors to get into the markets that they want to, while the pandemic is ongoing. Specially for the Maldivian resorts who are thriving in tourism, probably the only country thriving as almost all the resorts are full. This will help them to manage their supply chain as we give a lot of options, over 10,000 products and services are offered these few days. The site will be on after the live expo also, for 3 months.” He concluded by thanking the software provider, Mr. Maash from O2 Events who has been around to help in all of their virtual events and helped them with this event as well. Finally, in October, CDC Events & Travels Pvt Ltd along with O2 Events will also be organizing the Boat Show with the Export Development Board of Sri Lanka.
Mrs. Mariyam Noordeen, shared a few words during the opening ceremony and mentioned that it is possible to have virtual events as successfully as physical events. At the same time, Chefs Guild of Maldives have shown their support to showcase skills of chefs working in the Maldives in such a competitive environment. She showed her appreciation to Mr. Imran and Mr. Dishan for giving the opportunity to the chefs to enhance their skills and knowledge, and compete with each other to show their skills to the world. She added, “Chefs Guild of Maldives will be working together with all the chefs to come up with various different kinds of virtual exhibitions and I hope and wish in next year, Imran and the team will also be enhancing in a better way to attract more, perhaps from the outside of the Maldives and from the international chef’s community as well. World Chefs is also introducing a new virtual exhibition.” In addition to this, she mentioned that the World Chefs is looking to introduce a new class in the future, the vegan category which is an opportunity for chefs, as it is something that can be done from the variety of vegetables grown in the Maldives.
Speaking last, Senior Business Development Manager at Nestlé Professional, - Gold Partner of FHA Virtual Trade Fair – Mr. Dishan Wijayawardena started off with thanking the CDC team for inviting him to grace the event and he commended the effort of the team for successfully kicking off this mega event while overcoming the challenges faced during the pandemic. Mr. Dishan said that in a time where we are forced to heavily rely on virtual platforms, though the situation is temporary, the changes are here as we have to adapt ourselves. Commenting on the relevance of the culinary aspect in hospitality industry, Mr. Dishan said, “As the largest industry in the Maldives, in tourism we believe that good food is the main factor that tourists always look for and it must be trusted as well as familiar products.” He further said, “This program has extended the young aspiring chefs in the Maldives to develop their skills which ultimately helps them to find employment globally.” In his ending remarks, Mr. Dishan wished all the exhibitors, the buyers and the culinary challenge participants the best of luck and a successful event for CDC. https://www.fhavirtual.com/
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