Travel Corporation India promotes Tourism through Cuisine Exchange Programme

By BW Hotelier

PrashantNarayanUSETRAVEL CORPORATION (India) Ltd. (TCI), inbound division of Thomas Cook (India), in a pioneering initiative, managed over 100 delegates from China, Korea and Taiwan, at a unique food exchange program. This original concept was launched in partnership with Beijng Kangyuan Food Culture Exchange Center and Hotel Kempinski Ambience, Delhi.

Key dignitaries present at the event were Zhang Wenyan and Liang Cheng from The International Nutritious Cuisine Research Association (of China and Korea respectively), and Xie from Taiwan Chinese Cuisine & Travel Development Institute; Ma of Beijing Youth Travel Ltd., Rohit Tokhi and Neelabh Chugh, Hotel Kempinski Ambience and Prashant Narayan, COO and Head of Leisure Travel (Inbound), TCI (seen addressing the gathering in photo).

In a strategic initiative to leverage China’s ’Visit India Year 2015’, TCI positioned Incredible India via an original concept of Culinary/ Gourmet Tourism to tap the strong emerging Inbound Chinese market, as also that of Korea and Taiwan.

India being the home of a diversity of vegetarian cuisines, an engaging platform of a Cuisine Competition (Bodhi Cup) was chosen with special focus on the nutritional value and health factor of vegetarian meals.

Narayan said, ’TCI’s internal data has highlighted the growing influence of China as a powerful source market for inbound tourism. While Chinese tourists stand at 100 million (expected to touch 200 million by 2020), India enjoys unfortunately but an insignificant share. Food plays a critical role in every culture and hence in a focused attempt to leverage the China market potential, equally that of Korea and Taiwan, the 11th International Nutritious Cuisine Competition (Bodhi Cup) was organized, with special emphasis on vegetarian food. The Cuisine Contest created a delightful on-ground engagement for over 100 participating chefs from across China, Korea and Taiwan, with vibrant discussion around India, vegetarian cuisine, nutrition, health and fitness.’

As a special gesture, our team at TCI has invited the delegates to experience Indian hospitality and explore India’s heritage and culture ’ the iconic Taj Mahal, holy city of Varanasi and Bodh Gaya.

Narayan concluded, ’Prime Minister Modi’s pro-tourism initiative of e-TV (covering 43 countries, extended to an additional 31 countries) now includes China, and this augurs well in giving a fillip to Inbound Tourism. With cuisine seeing increasing interest, our Inbound team has created a unique product portfolio that includes culinary experiences along with special yoga tours, Indian ayurveda and spa-wellness programmes, etc to engage the discerning Inbound markets and we hope this creates a buzz for the upcoming season.’


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