The global food industry is targeting the GCC market as an opportunity for future growth, as GGC spending on food imports is set to more than double from US$ 24 billion in 2008 to US$ 49 billion by 2020 according to a report by the Economist Intelligence Unit.
In a further sign of confidence in the region, hundreds of companies have already committed to next year’s Gulfood exhibition which is organised by Dubai World Trade Centre.
More than 90 percent of the allocated space at the region’s largest trade exhibition for food, drink, foodservice and hospitality equipment has already been sold, which takes place 21 – 24 February 2010, at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre (DICEC).
“Essential goods and services such as food and drink have remained strong during the past year, and there are many opportunities for growth in the GCC,” said Helal Saeed Almarri, CEO, Dubai World Trade Centre. “New international companies are looking to break into the Middle East for the first time, and the proven popularity of Gulfood highlights just how important this region is to their overall business plan.”
Gulfood 2010 will take place all within one venue thanks to the opening of the new Sheikh Saeed Halls at DICEC, utilising the full one million square metres. Restaurant & Café, and Ingredients Middle East also take place alongside the show at DICEC to allow industry buyers to source everything in one visit.
Leading manufacturers including Al Thika, Baking Technologies, Cargill, Chalhoub, Del Monte, GEA, Ishida, Nestle, Symrise and Villeroy & Boch have already confirmed their place at next year’s show. It is expected that the show will be a complete sell out by the end of the year.
“The Hershey Company is excited to exhibit for the first time at Gulfood 2010. Gulfood allows us to share with key retailers, distributors and buyers our exciting growth plans for our brands and products in the Middle East and surrounding markets,” said Tim Dunigan, Senior VP International Sales, The Hershey Company.
The representation of 75 countries so far also heralds the international market’s recognition of the exhibition as an essential event on the food business’ calendar, and emphasises its appeal as a vital platform for industry growth.
Industry business professionals on the day of the show will be able to buy either a Day Pass for AED 60, or a Four Day Pass for AED 120. Gulfood is open from 11am – 7pm Sunday 21 February 2010 to Wednesday 24 February 2010 and from 11am – 5pm on Thursday 25 February 2010.