Tasmanian MasterChef episodes tempt the nation Thu 21 June 2012 Scott Bacon Minister for Tourism The four episodes of the popular television show Masterchef have delivered tremendous exposure to Tasmania's tourism, hospitality and food sectors, the Minister for Tourism, Scott Bacon, said today. Mr Bacon said the four episodes shot in Tasmania in February were a great opportunity to put Tasmania's natural beauty and culinary attractions in the national spotlight. "Here in Tasmania we know we've got world-class food and wine experiences right on our doorstep," Mr Bacon said. "These four episodes were a great opportunity to spread the word with a television audience of more than 1.1 million viewers a night. "It has also given Tasmanian tourism businesses and associations the chance to benefit through other partner promotions which were timed to coincide with the airing of the Tasmanian episodes. "These opportunities focused on building awareness of our tourism experiences and generating travel to Tasmania, and included the 'Save a Mainlander' campaign, which we launched on 1 June." Mr Bacon said the Tasmanian episodes were extremely well received by the team behind the hit show. "For example, Executive Producer Margaret Bashfield said that the Tassie week was an absolute highlight for them," he said. "She said that the Stanley challenge was without doubt the best of the series and is now the benchmark for all their future challenges. "MasterChef's Series Producer Tim Toni also said that their Tassie week had gone off the radar in so many ways, not least in social media, with comments like 'best MasterChef episode ever'." Mr Bacon said that some local tourism businesses and regions associated with the MasterChef episodes have said their investment in the promotion was worthwhile. "We've heard that businesses in Stanley were ecstatic about the promotion and the Cradle Coast Authority said last week that hits to their region's mytassiebreak website tripled during the 8-day regional advertising campaign they ran alongside the Tasmanianepisodes. "The owner of Providore 24 in Stanley was also reported recently as saying the area has been re-invigorated by MasterChef's visit - with increased interest in the area and its produce, as well as lots of extra website inquiries." Mr Bacon said the filming of MasterChef in various locations around the statewas largely the result of the work of Tourism Tasmania and their Visiting Journalist Program, with additional support coming from a number of tourism associations, operators, regions and local councils, to make the episodes possible. "I want to congratulate the team at Tourism Tasmania for their work in pulling this project together," he said. "It is a great example of the industry and key stakeholders working together to market Tasmania. "Those who partnered with Tourism Tasmania were the Huon Council, the Hobart City Council, Launceston City Council, Northern Tasmania Development Board, Hobart and Surrounds Zone group, Cradle Coast Authority and the NW Coast Zone Group. "Judging by the fantastic response we've received to date, and the associated promotions which are yet to conclude, I'm confident these efforts will reap rewards for our tourism operators."