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Hooha Over Huhus at Wildfood Festival

News of Hokitika’s Wildfood Festival and its gourmet bush tucker has produced an unusual request from a Japanese game show.

Festival organiser Mike Keenan said Ainori, a Japanese game show has asked for fifty live huhu grubs from the festival to be couriered to Rotorua where they will be used in a cooking show that will broadcast into 12 million Japanese homes.

An incredulous Keenan said the cooking show featured four males and three females who “drove round in a pink van finding love through different experiences”.

The live huhu grubs destined to become television stars of the east will be chocolate coated. Keenan said the mind boggled as to how the huhu grubs were going to be used by the Japanese game show couples and said there has been no reaction as yet from animal rights groups.

Japan is not the only country that has taken an interest in Hokitika’s 13th Wildfoods Festival. American network CBS will be showing footage of the festival later this month and Ten Network from Australia is sending a presenter to cover the event for their programme ‘Tell Us Where To Go’.

Over a million readers read about last year’s festival in The New York Times and locally the festival will feature in Cushla Marney’s book ‘Quirky and Different Events in New Zealand’.

Newstalk ZB will cover the event live on Saturday, both television channels will be filming and food magazines such as Cuisine will be attending.

Air New Zealand is now putting on a special day trip flights to Hokitika to help meet demand.


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