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UAE food consumption to hit 59.2m tonnes by 2025

DUBAI, October 31, 2017

A growing population, increasing tourist numbers and rising incomes will all contribute to pushing UAE food consumption to 59.2 million tonnes annually by 2025, according to the latest UAE Food Industry Report 2017.

The findings of the report were revealed during a keynote address, ‘Made in the UAE’, delivered by Saleh Abdullah Lootah, the chairman of Food and Beverage Manufacturers Group, on the opening day today (October 31) of Gulfood Manufacturing 2017, expo.

The Middle East region’s biggest food and beverage, ingredients, processing and packaging and supply chain solutions exhibition, will run until November 2 in Dubai, UAE.

Lootah was speaking at the Gulfood Manufacturing Business Talks Conference, which will see a series of presentations and interactive symposiums taking place on the side-lines of the event.

He gave an in-depth insight into how the country’s food industry is evolving and growing in response to social behaviour and changing food habits, as well as the challenges the UAE faces.

Outlining a three-pronged attack in the form of the UAE Food Industry Report, the UAE Food Platform and Zero Food Waste Policy, he pointed out that the sector was on course to meet both consumer demands and UAE Government mandates for a more sustainable, zero-waste future.

“Food is the second biggest sector in the UAE. The total food sales figure in the UAE for 2016 was Dh121 billion ($329 billion) and will only continue to grow,” said Lootah, who is also the chairman of Dubai Chamber of Commerce, and managing director of Al Islami Foods.

According to him, the food consumption is forecast to rise from 48.1 tonnes last year to 59.2 million by 2021, due to a rising consumer base and growth in income.

With the UAE’s population estimated to hit 10 million by 2025 and tourism numbers poised to reach 20 million by 2020, the official acknowledged that the UAE’s key food manufacturing industry players face a range of challenges to meet demand while improving efficiency.

Lootah also outlined the challenges facing the UAE food industry, such as the impending implementation of VAT, and rising costs, as the core factors encouraging companies to be more efficient.

Abdulla Belhoul, CEO of Dubai Food Park, re-emphasised how the facility will enhance Dubai’s position as a hub for exports and re-exports, with dedicated facilities and services helping food industry players reduce supply chain costs.

The informative Business Talks Conference will continue today with an immensely topical symposium Construction and Operation of Food Establishments, said a statement.

With Dubai home to more than 16,000 food outlets and restaurants, including 2,074 new restaurants that opened between the middle of 2015 and the end of 2016, this session is sure to attract the attention of delegates, said the organisers.

Other attention-grabbing sessions on day two of the show include Food and Nutrition Trends – What is New, which will focus on new product innovations that support the growing consumer trend to improve diet and wellness.

The interactive session will analyse practical examples covering everything from sugar reduction to GI bread, and will feature expert speakers including Jehaina Hasan Al Ali, Food Permits and Applied Nutrition Unit at Dubai Municipality, they stated.

Other sessions will include a look at the trends in the industry for 2017 and beyond, technological developments in food manufacturing and processing, and ‘Blending Human Expertise, Digital Platforms and Data Analytics: A Food Industry Perspective’, which will give delegates an insight into how automation, digitisation and big data can transform their businesses, they added. – TradeArabia News Service




Tags: | UAE | Food | consumption | 2025 |

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