Trust formed to grow food festival

JAZIAL CROSSLEY
Last updated 05:00 17/12/2013

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A new trust has been formed to head the capital's foodie festival Visa Wellington On A Plate.

Positively Wellington Tourism and economic development agency Grow Wellington founded the annual event in 2009. The festival events programme has since grown more than 270 per cent.

They have now formed The Wellington Culinary Events Trust to govern and develop the festival, and will be seeking a festival director and chief executive.

Chair of the former Wellington On A Plate advisory board Rachel Taulelei said that while the festival only happened for just over a fortnight each year, it gave the region a platform year-round.

"Visa Wellington On a Plate supports, strengthens and highlights Wellington's incredible cuisine community and has been pivotal in positioning the region as the country's culinary capital."

The 17-day festival won't change at an operational level, Positively Wellington Tourism chief executive David Perks says, but the trust will mean it has dedicated people working on building and improving the festival year round.

"Our intention was always to incubate Visa Wellington On a Plate before passing it on to a team of experts who could then turn it into an event of world culinary standard, firmly etched on the bucket lists of foodies throughout the world.

"In just five short years, Visa Wellington On a Plate has grown into New Zealand's largest culinary festival and a must-do event on the winter calendar. We are incredibly proud of what the team has achieved and are equally excited to pass it on to an independent trust, which will be able to give the festival the expertise and attention it craves to further thrive."

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