May 14, 2019

I guess we won’t be having an international street food congress anytime soon.

Organizers of the World Street Food Congress (WSFC), a gastronomy event set to be held in Bonifacio Global City in October, announced on Facebook today that the event is “again canceled, like they did in 2018.”

“No reason nor rhyme was given,” organizers said on Facebook. “This is very disturbing and disappointing. […] This was after 6 months of legwork the WSFC did in curating and accommodating the TPB (Tourism Promotions Board) and DOT (Department of Tourism) ideals for the event.”

WSFC said for the past six months, they have already located chefs, cooks, street food professionals, and even vendors from 14 countries. They have partnered with seven culinary colleges in the country and 200 students in forming this event. They even “curated a special showcase to feature these students and their local food skills to be showcased in Singapore, among others.”

WSFC added that well-known international speakers, street food vendors with Michelin Stars and World Street Food Award winners, media organizations, and the host had already been invited.

“This is unbecoming of the TPB and DOT, but we doubt this is personal as we have a good working relationship with the ground team.”

The WSFC has been held in the country in 2016 and 2017. But in 2018, the event was canceled for undisclosed reasons.

The only hint we got then was that its cancellation came within the same week as the Madrid Fusion Manila, often dubbed as the Asian edition of the world’s “most important gastronomy congress.” The given reason to Madrid Fusion by Cesar Montano, former TPB chief operating officer, was that, “Many are of the impression the government is spending so much money promoting other cultures.” (READ: World Street Food Congress is cancelled because of… patriotism?)

Although WSFC did not say if the event still has chances to push through, the organizers did mention that they “will press on to deliver it.”

We’re currently waiting for the response of the Tourism Promotions Board and the Department of Tourism on the matter.


Featured image courtesy of World Street Food Congress on Facebook

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TAGS: bgc canceled congress event food October restaurant Street world street food