UAE: Gulfood to share knowledge vital for food industry growth

food-securityGovernment ministers, top level officials, international industry leaders and food business experts will come together in Dubai to continue global dialogue and knowledge exchange at a leading food and hospitality show.

Gulfood 2015 will run from February 8 to 12 at the Dubai World Trade Centre and will play host to the Gulfood Leaders Events, which is a series of high-level conference dressing key topics on the global food industry agenda that are paramount for a secure, sustainable food future both regionally and around the world.

Beyond its position as one of the highest volume trading platforms of any international food industry trade show, Gulfood remains the centre of knowledge exchange for many food-related sectors, said a statement.

The event will also host the World Food Security Summit, a leading platform for addressing global food security action plans and policies.

Heavy reliance on imports, population growth, increasing demand for animal protein and limited water supply make the issue of food security particularly relevant for the region.

While 1.3 billion tonnes of food are lost or wasted globally every year (Food and Agriculture Organisation – United Nations), demand for food worldwide is predicted to increase by 60 per cent by 2050.

The World Food Security Summit will bring together key global policy makers and senior industry professionals to explore strategies and solutions that address a sustainable global agriculture industry, policy reforms, international farmland acquisition strategies and domestic agriculture initiatives.

Khadim Abdullah Al Darei, co-founder and managing director, Al Dahra Agriculture, who will deliver the summit’s opening keynote address and participate in a ministerial panel entitled, ‘Building Coherent Global Governance for Food Security,’ said: “Securing immediate and long-term food security remains an on-going priority for many regional and international governments. With insufficient arable farming conditions across the region forcing several Arab nations to invest in foreign land to expand their agriculture sectors, the policy of effective, responsible and ethical agro-investment should not jeopardise food security – it should strengthen it.

“The wide-ranging benefits include capital inflows in the investment market, employment creation via local sourcing of labour, as well as innovative technology transfers, quality improvements and productivity increases which often lead to growth in the gross output of food supplies for the domestic and export markets.”

Gulfood will also play host to the Halal Investment Conference, a sector of increasing financial importance for the global food and beverage industry.

Accounting for almost one-fifth of world food trade, halal produce and policy continues to be a key topic on the Gulfood agenda and the Halal Investment Conference will bring together key halal sector players and senior government decision makers to discuss commercial and business opportunities presented by the $1.1 trillion global halal market.

Food franchising, a growth driver of the regional hospitality market, with also have a dedicated platform this year, with an effective network of entrepreneurs, franchisors, franchisees and investors sharing insights, trends and opportunities at The Food Franchising Forum.

An essential guide to food franchising, the conference is especially pertinent as the UAE is a strategic point-of-entry for the growing number of international brands expanding into the GCC and the wider region.

Trixie LohMirmand, senior vice president, Exhibitions and Events Management, DWTC, the show organiser, said: “Having evolved into the world’s biggest annual food industry trade show through its unparalleled geographical reach, supplier and product breadth, and substantial trading and revenues generated, Gulfood’s food industry influence has been extended via the cross-border knowledge exchange that the world’s pre-eminent thought leaders, decision makers, industry visionaries and experts bring to our Gulfood Leaders Events. The importance and valuable role of the specialised conferences and forums at Gulfood increases every year.”

Source: TradeArabia News Service