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Tourism Chief highlights Culinary Tourism in PHL at World Chefs Asia President Forum 2023

Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco announced the Department’s prioritization of culinary tourism as among the country’s multidimensional tourism product offerings. 

Frasco made the statement on Monday evening (31 July) at the World Chefs Asia President Forum 2023 held in Pasay City. 

Worldchefs is a professional organization dedicated to maintaining and improving the culinary standards of global cuisines through membership education, training, and professional development. Founded in October 1928 at the Sorbonne in Paris, the World Association of Chefs’ Societies is a global network of chefs’ associations. 

During her speech, Secretary Frasco expressed her gratitude to the chefs that purveyed their love for food resulting in the propagation of their respective countries’ cultures and identities. 

“Our President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. envisions the Philippines to have a primary role in Asia, in terms of being able to reintroduce itself to the world, not only on the aspect of fun and adventure, but most importantly, to allow you to get to know the heart and soul of the Filipinos that lies in our history, our heritage, our identity, and our living cultural traditions, including, and especially, our culinary traditions,” Secretary Frasco enthused. 

The three-day forum, co-hosted by DOT’s attached agency, the Tourism Promotions Board (TPB) Philippines brought together some 100 delegates from 18 countries in the food and beverage (F&B) and hospitality industries, including leaders, professionals, educators, suppliers, Philippine Culinary Cup judges, and competitors from member countries of different Asia-Pacific chefs associations. 

“Under the National Tourism Development Plan recently approved by President Marcos, one of the objectives identified by the DOT is the importance of multidimensional tourism, to ensure that when tourists come to the Philippines, they are able to enjoy the width, length and breadth of our offerings. And that is why we’re here to support culinary and gastronomic tourism,” the tourism chief added. 

The LTB Philippines Chefs Association, the premier chefs’ association in the Philippines and a national member of the World Association of Chefs’ Societies or Worldchefs, organized the event. 

Meanwhile,  World Chefs President Thomas Gugler expressed his love for the Philippines, particularly, its local cuisine. 

“I love the Philippines, the hotel, the friendliness of the people, the warm welcome, the food is great. I love to have Filipino food,” the Worldchefs President shared. 

Chef Gugler likewise expressed his love for Filipino food including Chicken Adobo, Beef Caldereta, Pancit, and Sinigang, also highlighting the dedication and hard work of Filipino culinarians that he has worked with, emphasizing their impact on the global arena. 

The World Chefs Asian Presidents Forum, which aims to promote camaraderie among chefs in the Asia-Pacific region, included various activities, such as the presentation of the latest gastronomical trends, sharing knowledge on sustainability practices, conducting culinary education sessions, the launch of the regional e-book, global chefs challenge, and community outreach in Baseco Port Area, Manila. 

“Food is important not only because it feeds the stomach but also because it feeds the soul. Through our support for the propagation of our culinary traditions, we are able to invoke pride of place and a sense of identity, and we’re able to find common ground, a reason for which we unite,” said Secretary Frasco. 

“For in every celebration, big or small, in every activity, whether it be a fiesta, festival, graduation, wedding, or even a wake, from birth to tomb, food is there to give us the comfort that we need because it’s anchored in a deeply embedded memory. And therefore, I myself would like to express my gratitude for all the passion with which you have pursued culinary development all over the world. I’m most impressed by your efforts as well to propagate these culinary traditions among the youth to ensure that the traditions of your respective countries are continued and honored,” enthused the tourism chief. 

Worldchefs Continental Director for Asia Director Willment Leong, LTB Philippines Chefs Association President Chef Carlo Miguel, LTB Philippines Chefs Association Vice President James Antolin, DOT Undersecretary Ferdinand Jumapao, and representatives from TPB joined the chefs and delegates during the forum. 


Published:August 1, 2023

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