The World of Coffee & Tea has wrapped up for another year with a guest appearance from the Prime Minister of Thailand Prayut Chanocha. Chanocha is a former Commander in Chief of the Royal Thai Army and rose to power when he led a military’s coup to overthrow his predecessor in May 2014. Chanocha’s attendance of Thaifex – World of Food Asia, the umbrella event for World of Coffee & Tea, is indicative of the fair’s importance to Thailand’s international tourism and trade. With the legitimacy of Chanocha’s claim to power under question, the prime minister’s regime badly needs the support of foreign business, foreign affairs columnist Simon Tisdall recently reported. Organisers say Thaifex proved its merit by welcoming more than 35,000 visitors and 1675 exhibitors across 16 sectors. “This year, we marked a milestone by expanding our fairground, and the continued growth and encouraging response is solid proof that we are growing in the right direction that we started out in,” said Michael Dreyer, Vice President, Asia Pacific, Koelnmesse. “This has been very rewarding for Koelnmesse and our co-organisers, DITP and TCC.” In the event’s 12th edition, World of Coffee & Tea hosted numerous activities for prime ministers and coffee professionals alike. Andrea Curtarelli of La Marzocco and Charles Kutner, Vice President Sales and Marketing of Boncafe Thailand, drew crowds when they spoke at a one-day La Marzocco and Boncafe Out of the Box collaboration event. Boncafe Training Sessions demonstrated techniques for preparing café drinks traditionally not found on the streets of Thailand, and offered participants tips for coffee shop business direction. The Celebrity Coffee Bar featured 11 national champions, one World Siphon Champion and one World Cup Tasters Champion, for four days of latte art, brew bar and espresso sessions. Specialty Coffee Association of Europe coffee training ran throughout the event, focusing mainly on brewing and grinding methods. Dreyer said Koelnmesse is working towards a bigger and even better Thaifex – World of Food Asia next year.