Gulfood 2017, the 22nd edition of the world’s largest food and beverage trade platform, has rubberstamped its standing as a true industry game-changer and innovation laboratory.
Spread across an area of one million square feet, Gulfood was held from February 26 to March 2 at Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC), and showcased up to 90,000 food professionals from 150 countries, absorbing tens of thousands of products promoted by 5,000 exhibitors from 120 countries. With more than 2,000 exhibiting newcomers at the world-renowned exhibition, this year’s event has served up a telling snapshot of innovative new products now impacting an industry striving to meet seismic shifts in consumer dietary and lifestyle preferences.
“Gulfood is the most dynamic sourcing platform for all those involved in the business of food. It is a weathervane to emerging trends and it enables suppliers and procurers to adapt their business plans to meet consumer-driven developments,” said Trixie LohMirmand, Senior Vice President, Exhibitions & Events Management, DWTC.
Among the exhibitors, there are 64 Indian exporters dealing into range of agriculture and processed food products under the banner of APEDA (The Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority). APEDA is an apex organisation under the Ministry of Commerce & Industry. Rita Teaotia, Commerce Secretary, inaugurated the APEDA pavilion. APEDA is mandated with the responsibility of promotion and development of the export of various agro products.
India is one of the largest producers of food in the world. APEDA’s export basket includes fresh and processed fruits and vegetables, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, pickles, chutneys, guar gum, poultry, meat and dairy products, confectionery, cut flowers, food grains, aromatic plants, basmati rice and Indian long grain rice and other Indian delicacies. India exports agricultural products to more than 80 countries world over. The export of Agro products for the year 2015-16 was to the tune of USD 16195.61 million.
The UAE is a potential market for Indian food products i.e. Basmati Rice, Fresh Fruits & Vegetables, Non Basmati Rice, Buffalo Meat, alcoholic Beverages, Sheep & Goat Meat, Processed Fruits and Juices, Cereal Preparation, Misc Processed items, Dairy Products, Milled Products, Wheat, Cocoa Products, Pulses, Other Cereals, Groundnut, Processed Vegetables, Floriculture, Guar gum, etc. The export of APEDA scheduled products to UAE market for the year 2015-16 was USD 1371 million.
The awareness of different foods from around the world has increased dramatically as a result of globalisation, with global tourism to reach 1.5 billion by 2020 and 65 pc of households worldwide connected online. This rise in awareness has resulted in a strong response from eager exhibitors for the World Food – one of eight specialist sectors in the newly evolved format of Gulfood 2017.
Commenting on the latest positive market indicators alongside the growth of the event, Trixie LohMirmand explained, “Recent research is demonstrating that the UAE market remains resilient and there are strong fundamentals for long-term optimism in the F&B sector. Innovation is coming into its’ own and the Gulfood exhibitor profile is awash with new and exciting concepts which are gradually transforming the end-user experience. This all holds out enormous opportunity for operators and suppliers who are looking to leverage the concepts and products within their own businesses and geographic footprints.”