They couldn't be bothered, because they don't need to bother.
The event showcased local food makers and suppliers, local beer companies, local cider makers, local delicatessens, and local bars and restaurants, including Wilde's, and a whole lot more. Specialist cheese-makers, butchers, bakers, pie-makers, chocolatiers, artisans of every variety and trade were showing off their wares and having a good time.
The timing of the festival might be regarded as significant. The Not Dark Yet blog last week which discussed the unfortunate demise of Âime Sœur attracted a great deal of attention, with comments on the blog, Facebook and Twitter posts and emails, and in person. I have seldom been stopped in the street so many times - often by complete strangers.
All decried the circumstances which lead to the closure. All condemned the influence which chain operations appear to hold over the leaders of our community.
So where were the chains during this great weekend, full of happy people eating good food, drinking good wine (on the Wilde's stand, obviously) and listening to good music from The Swaps and The Pips?
Well, they sure as hell weren't at the Festival.
Probably because decisions about participation are not made by the Leamington outlets, but by computers and managers in some tower block in London, or maybe even New York.
And Leamington Spa, for them, is merely a line on a spreadsheet.
This is the essence of the problem I raised last week. And this is why I have, for the first time, returned to the same subject in successive weeks.
We are discussing important issues about the future.
It is about the character and culture of our town. It is about whether Leamington becomes yet another faceless small town, full of the same neon fascias and the same faceless activities and operations; or remains a centre of interest and excellence with a plethora of independent bars, restaurants and shops.
Right now, the independents are losing and losing out.
But the Food and Drink Festival showed that not all is lost.
And, personally, I am delighted that the Stradas and Wagawamas et al did not turn up.
They would have ruined the fun with their microwaving by numbers food and their corporate wine lists and their demands for preferential treatment.
Ollie and I, manning the Wilde's stand, met lots of new friends, lots of old friends, and dispensed hundreds of glasses of wine, ranging from a Cinsault rosé when the sun was out to a second growth Saint Julien, Chateau Gruaud Larose 2002. (It was drinking very well, thank you.) We even got photographed and interviewed by the Coventry Evening Telegraph.
It was a great weekend, which I thoroughly enjoyed, despite having spent Friday and the first couple of hours of Saturday as 'father of the bride' at the wedding of daughter Cassidy and Mike.
The buzz, the business, the good spirits of our neighbour exhibitors, the smiles of the people who passed and often paused by our stand kept us going.
And the chains? Good riddance!
How was the wedding? you ask. It was fantastic. Pictures will be available when the happy couple return from honeymoon. But meantime, couldn't resist posting this - of Maximilian the pageboy. Cool - or what?