29 countries to participate in Foodex Saudi 2015

Syeda Amtul, Saudi Gazette

JEDDAH — “Twenty-nine countries are to participate in the activities of the food and saudi-foodex-logobeverage international exhibition “Foodex Saudi 2015” organized by Reed Sunaidi Exhibitions.

The third edition of the food and beverage exhibition takes place on Nov. 17-20 at the Jeddah Centre for Forums and Events.

Rony Haddad, exhibition manager, said that exhibitors representing different sectors from home and abroad would attend the exhibition. “Preparations for the exhibition started early by holding a number of workshops that aim to identify priorities, to assess results achieved in the last two exhibitions and to keep on the previous success,” Haddad said.

According to his assessment, the annual value of food consumption in Saudi market is about SR224 billion. He expressed his thanks and appreciation to the partners for the success, expecting more development and progress in the new cycle that keeps up with many developments of which the most important are the remarkable increase in consumption volume, taste changes and fast progress of different companies to meet clients’ expectations.

At the periodical meeting of the Steering Committee, Khaled Darweesh, CEO of Manuel Supermarket, the exhibition strategic partner, stressed on the importance of participation of local food companies in “Foodex Saudi” as a local international exhibition, and not to focus on participation in exhibitions outside Kingdom of Saudi Arabia only. Saudi market represents more than 64% of the Gulf market volume, with the great rise of purchasing power of most of its consumers, he pointed out.

Mazen Elias, brand manager in Arrow Food Group, said, “The exhibition is a Middle Eastern platform that enjoys great confidence due to the size of annual preparations and the diversity of participants’ base from all continents. The exhibition represents a real opportunity to build partnerships and investments with leading local and international companies in food industry.”

Saad Al-Ghanem, manager of marketing department in Bawazir Trading Group, said that the international cooking competition organized by Reed Sunaidi, the organizer of the exhibition, has been one of the most prominent events that attracts people to the exhibition, especially that it is supervised by Thomas Gugler, regional director of World Association of Chefs Societies (WACS), with the participation of 250 chefs from the largest 5- star hotels in the Kingdom. It is necessary to expand in local food industry to meet the increasing demand, which increases by 18% annually, Al-Ghanem stated.

Mohammed Al-Ghamdi, marketing and public relations manager at Institute of Tourism, King Abdulaziz University, said, “The institute is considered the first one specialized in tourism and hospitality in Jeddah. It is a strategic partner of Foodex Saudi Exhibition as students of the institute participate in the exhibition as promising Saudi cadres in tourism and hospitality sector.”

“Students of Institute of Tourism come into contact with international experts and leaders of food industry in the world,” he added.

“Saudi market has promising opportunities in food sector,” Al-Ghamdi added pointing out in this context that the market aspires to take advantage of international expertise to establish food factories in Kingdom to minimize exportation costs.

In an interview with Haya Al-Sunaidi, CEO of Reed Sunaidi Exhibitions, she said, “Reed Sunaidi Exhibitions aspired to contribute to developing the exhibitions sector in the Kingdom under the vision of Prince Sultan Bin Salman, chairman of General Authority for Tourism and Antiquities and chairman of Supervisory Committee of the National Program for Exhibitions and Conferences, and to develop exhibition centers based on international standards which contribute to enhancing the Kingdom’s abilities to attract international events, which is a prerequisite to raise the services quality level in the sector, and to promote for attracting visitors to exhibition and conference centers with the impact of this on investment increment.”

The international food exhibition, “Foodex Saudi 2015” contributes to spreading food consumption culture according to health and economic standards through participation of food experts and local and international chefs in the seminars held on the sidelines of the exhibition.