Vendors record high patronage at GTCO food, drink fair

Some vendors at the 2022 Guaranty Trust Holding Company (GTCO) Plc Food and Drink Festival said they recorded increased patronage and sales of products at the event.

The vendors disclosed this yesterday in separate interviews they granted the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.

They commended the company for the platform, saying the fair helped them to create awareness for their products.

Deborah Peter, a representative of Salad Ville, who admitted that sales at the fair had been great, expressed gratitude to the GTCO Group for the opportunity.

Peter said: “We are food vendors, we deal in healthy meals and eating right generally. This is our first time at the GTCO Food and Drink fair and the visibility for our brand has been great.

“Our sales from Day One of the fair have been tremendous and created a space for our brand in the sale of healthy meals. The GTCO fair is working wonders for our business and we believe we will retain most of our customers even after the fair today.

“GTCO thank you for the opportunity to showcase our brand, it is an awesome exposure for us. It is a turning point for our business and other vendors participating at the fair.”

To Elizabeth Okwechima of Ibot Exclusive Events, “the sales this year have been better than previous editions.

“We are into finger foods and being a part of this year’s GTCO’s food and drink fair so far has been a great experience. This is not our first time and the sales this year have been amazing despite the current economic situation of the country.

“GTCO has been good to vendors in both the food and drink industry, helping our businesses to remain firm.”

Oluwabusayo Ajadi, the representative of Tiger Nuts Republic, said aside from increased sales, the fair gave his brand more visibility in the sector.

Ajadi said: “We do tiger nuts products. We currently have 21 variants of tiger nuts milk and four variants of the swallow meals and cereals.

“The GTCO Fair is an opportunity for us to create more awareness for our products. From Day one of the fair till this moment our customer base has increased greatly and today being the last day, we hope for more customers.

“Sales have been great this year compared to previous years outing. We want to say a big thank you to GTCO for this opportunity to showcase our brand to the world via this platform.”

Another two-time vendor at the fair, Ferdinand Christopher of Amazing Meals Kitchen, also expressed his joy of the increased patronage.

Christopher said: “We make canapés, sandwiches and local cuisine. This is our second time at the GTCO Food and Drink fair. This year, the sales started poorly on Day One of the fair but on the Day Two, it picked up and today it has been great so far.

“We have also been able to broaden our customer base, thanks to this opportunity given to the Small and Medium Enterprises in the food and drink sector.”

GTCO has been good to vendors in both the food and drink industry, helping our businesses to remain firm.

Customers too are happy

Customers and other participants at the fair also spoke to NAN on their experiences.

Tayo Oyawole, a customer, said she enjoyed the ambience of the fair but complained about some prices of the meals.

Oyawole said: “It is my first time at GTCO’s Food and Drink fair as a customer. I have gone around and I like what I am seeing, I love the ambience but the prices of some food items are not so fair.”

Another customer, Monisola Olajide, said she was comfortable with the prices and hoped to patronise the vendors after the fair.

Olajide said: “Today is my first time at the fair and it has been an amazing experience. There are different varieties of food at affordable prices. I am having a good time and will look out for some of the vendors outside the fair to patronise them.”

Moyo Fayorkun, another customer, expressed mixed feelings about the prices of food at the fair, saying: “This is my second day at the GTCO Food and Drink fair.

“Day Two of the fair was very rowdy, that is why I had to come early on this last day. I came for the fun and for my children to be entertained at the playground section of the fair.

“Some prices of food we see here are on the high side, but not all. I might not patronise some expensive vendors outside the fair, if they maintain the same prices.”

The free to attend three-day festival featured cooking master classes of cuisines chosen from all around the world and over 150 free retail stalls showcasing everything from the best of Nigeria’s street food to bite-sized gourmet treats and fresh farm produce from the farmers’ market.

The primary objective of the GTCO Food and Drink Festival is to showcase Nigeria’s diversity and industry as a people, whilst delivering a sumptuous culinary experience to food enthusiasts across the continent.

The fair returned after a two-year break occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic. (NAN)

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