The maiden edition of Taste of Lagos ‘the original’, a national template for bringing stakeholders in the food industry together to celebrate indigenous foods, will debut at the National Stadium, Lagos between December 2 – 5.
Mr. Abiodun Fagbohun, Chief Consultant of Iconic Events Ltd, organisers of the event, described Taste of Lagos ‘the Original’ as a concept that was modelled after popular annual global taste festivals, stressing that the core essence of the festival is to bring together the indigenous foods that reflect the cosmopolitan nature of Lagos.
“We conceptualised Taste of Lagos as the first of our pan-Nigerian initiative to popularise the rich food and beverage culture of our nation as well as help to reinforce the visibility of every State of the Federation on the world tourism map,” he said.
He added that, “It is when we embrace programmes like this to appreciate our foods that our farmers will be encouraged to produce more and the economy will be the better for it.”
Fagbohun said the week-long event will avail food producers and manufacturers the opportunity to showcase their products and give Nigerians enough reasons to patronise them.
According to him, “Special features of the event will include ‘celebrity kitchen’ where popular entertainment personalities would test their culinary prowess. About 200 secondary school pupils would also be hosted as special guests every day to enable them appreciate the richness of Nigerian foods. Nutrition experts will also be on hand to share their knowledge on the nutritional values of indigenous foods.”
He said the concept of Taste of Lagos was introduced to the Lagos State Government in 2005, following which Iconic Events Ltd registered the rights nationwide in keeping with global standards of the event.
“We have the original rights to stage this event in Nigeria because the taste concept has a universal template that must be followed,” Fagbohun said
He further explained that Taste of Lagos and others that would roll out across the country in 2016 will be targeted at reviving the indigenous food culture in Nigeria as well as avoiding potential loss of huge domestic and foreign earning from tourism.
“The more we move away from our food culture, the more we move away from what nature has endowed us with and in the next 20 years we stand the danger of not finding local delicacies on family food menus,” he stressed.
Statutory bodies in charge of foods and standards are expected at the Taste of Lagos food fair, which will be livened up with music and dance performances from across Lagos and Nigeria.