The anticipation of this year’s CNE opening day is over and the excitement for the CNE food offerings is put to rest. This years’ theme is Nutella.  Nutella everything – Nutella fries, spring rolls, ravioli, deep-fried Nutella banana … the list goes on. Last year’s theme was bacon, and the year before that was the debut of the infamous Krispy Kreme Hamburger that seemed to get more attention than the Royal Baby… well, maybe not that extreme, but that monstrosity received crazy press coverage!

The Marketing and PR teams driving this coverage are certainly doing something right.  They recently released a press release on some of the new foods scheduled to make an appearance on this summer’s menu and of course, the outrageous food items have hit the blogs and twitterverse alike, creating headlines such as “Cronut burger to be artery-hardening star of the Ex this year”, and “The top 5 outrageous foods coming to the CNE in 2013”. The fact that a Cronut burger is making headlines is quite impressive and I have to hand it to the masterminds behind the creations of the “latest and greatest”, artery-clogging masterpieces.

I often wonder how these items are dreamed up. Is it driven by the marketing people or the food people?

Marketing: Come up with a food menu so disgusting (yet awesome), that people HAVE to come and try it this year. Oh, and it make sure that it’s deep fried.


Food people: Hey marketing people, we just tossed a bunch of ingredients together at random and threw it in the deep fryer. It’s going to be a huge hit.

Marketing: GROSS! That’s perfect, and people are going to love it.

Either way, they have done an excellent job at building up the hype of the CNE, so go ahead, indulge in that bacon and peanut butter milkshake.  Perhaps start with that and then walk it off while you enjoy other entertainment (there’s things at the CNE other than FOOD?!), such as the Outdoor Market Place, International Pavilion, acrobatic shows, animals, rides and parades.

Image by Rebecca Siegel