Inspiring Expo Set To Showcase the Visitor Economy in the North East

An event for people in hospitality, tourism, supply chain, food and drink.


An unmissable event for anyone working within the hospitality, tourism, supply chain, food and drink industries in the North East, the HITS Expo 2024 will be held from the 13th – 14th May 2024 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Newcastle, and will also encompass the NECTA 2024 professional chef and inter-college competitions.

The HITS Expo 2024 highlights the role these vital sectors play in forging our region’s identity and offer, and provides opportunities for like-minded businesses and individuals to make valuable connections, network, attend workshops and demonstrations, and learn industry insights.

With an exciting mix of insight and inspiration delivered in an informal and entertaining way across the two days, the HITS Expo 2024 will include talks and discussions from leading experts, networking opportunities and career spotlights, as well as live demonstrations, recruitment showcases, and new and emerging products.

The event will also incorporate the NECTA 2024 competitions, where visitors can witness culinary excellence as top chefs from the North East compete in the NECTA Chef of the Year and Young Chef of the Year competitions, as well as watching student teams from local colleges take on a range of skill-based competitions. The NECTA 2024 competitions promise to be a highlight of the HITS Expo 2024, showcasing the region's culinary talent and pushing the boundaries of gastronomic creativity.

Delivered by Food and Drink North East, in partnership with Destination North East England, the UK’s first Destination Development Partnership, the HITS Expo 2024 is free to attend and a must-visit event for anyone with an appetite for growth, innovation and collaboration within the hospitality, tourism, supply chain and food and drink sectors in the North East.

Destination North East England is led by NewcastleGateshead Initiative on behalf of the region, working with delivery partners Visit Northumberland and Visit County Durham and in partnership with all seven local authorities to unlock the growth potential of the visitor economy.

Opportunities like the HITS Expo, North East Chef of the Year and Young Chef of the Year showcase and celebrate the innovation, drive and talent we have in the region's visitor economy. As we work on our ambitious plans to double the size of the visitor economy and grow jobs, investment and opportunities for residents and visitors across the North East, I'm looking forward to seeing the enthusiasm and passion in the room from industry leaders and a new generation of tourism and hospitality talent coming through,
Ian Thomas, Destination North East England lead and Director of Visitor Economy at NewcastleGateshead Initiative
From culinary and skills showcases to chef competitions, ButlerBots to meet the buyer sessions and insight panels, last year's HITS Expo was a huge success and felt like a watershed moment for hospitality, tourism and food and drink supply industries in terms of collectively coming together.
Chris Jewitt, Founder and CEO of Food and Drink North East

At HITS EXPO 24 we want to switch up gears by bringing more insights, inspiring more people, creating stronger connections and facilitating real and tangible opportunities for delegates, things that FADNE are deeply passionate about.

This year we are developing an exciting programme across the two days which will be jam packed with businesses, buyers, innovators, influencers, producers and stakeholders from across the collective industries where we’ll discuss skills, sustainability, food innovation and tourism alongside many other themes.

The HITS Expo 2024 will also run in tandem with the established NECTA Chef of The Year and Inter-College Competitions, an annual showcase, skills competition and platform that celebrates the region's gastronomic ambitions.

It’s going to be a regional event of national interest, we can’t wait to welcome everyone to the Crowne Plaza in May.”

Don't miss the opportunity to be part of the HITS Expo 2024 – a celebration of excellence, innovation, and collaboration in the North East's hospitality, tourism, and food and drink sectors.

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