Speaking at the opening ceremony, Vietnamese Ambassador to Japan Pham Quang Hieu said in recent years, the number of Japanese restaurants serving Vietnamese cuisine has been steadily increasing, with 'Pho' being one of the most ordered and increasingly popular dishes in Japan.
He said the two-day festival is the first of its kind in Japan to introduce Vietnamese cuisine, particularly Pho, a unique Vietnamese dish. It is also expected to further tighten people-to-people exchange and lasting friendship between Vietnam and Japan.
Tran Xuan Toan, Deputy Editor-in-Chief of Tuoi Tre newspaper and head of the organising board, said more than 50 food processors from southern provinces are also joining trade and investment promotion activities at this festival.
He added that it is also the first time a Pho festival has been held abroad.
In addition to directly introducing the flavours of Pho, the event also features various promotional activities for Pho, including rice noodle roll performances, a talk show called "Tinh yeu Pho Viet" (The Love for Vietnamese Pho) with the participation of artisans, experts and celebrities from both Vietnam and Japan, a competition for Japanese people to create Vietnamese Pho, and an exhibition and video screenings providing information and the history of the dish.
As part of the festival, a trade promotion event for over 110 Vietnamese and Japanese producers and traders of food and products derived from rice and starch was also held.
Among 40 booths, about half of them dedicate to serving Pho, including several Vietnamese restaurants. The two-day event is expected to attract hundreds of thousands of visitors.