Residents of the UAE consumed more Australian red meat products in 2008 than they did in 2007, according to a report issued recently by Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA), which showed that Aussie red meat sales in the UAE soared by 24 pc in 2008.
The report which showed major growth across the full range of Australian red meat products underlined the continuous significance of UAE market for Australian red meat products with overall sales totaling 31755 tons in 2008 compared to 25526 tons in 2007.
The report sets UAE as the largest market in the region for Australian beef products which recorded a massive increase by 138 pc, in 2008, jumping to 4312 tons from 1807 tons in 2007. The jump was due partially to increased demand by consumers and 5-star hotels, and mainly to growth of boneless beef sales for manufacturing hamburgers and frozen retail meat products.
Mutton sales also increased significantly from 9179 tons to 12278 tons, scoring a major growth by 34 pc, driven mainly by strong demand from caterers. Australian lamb which is traditionally in higher demand in the UAE market than beef and mutton products, increased by 2.20 pc to reach 13880 tons in 2008 compared to 13581 in 2007. Commenting on this major growth, Ian Ross, MLA Regional Manager - MEA Region, said: “The fact that this major growth increase in sales of various Australian red meat products in the UAE market happened in a period of rising costs, inflation and financial slump is a genuine endorsement by all stakeholders of the great confidence for Australia’s food safety systems, animal health and welfare and the integrity of the Australian halal system”.