Al-Rabie expands into new markets with “Awal Qatfa”

Published September 5th, 2006 - 12:22 GMT

Jeddah –– Al-Rabie Saudi Foods Company organized a launch ceremony for a new product range, under the name “Awal Qatfa”, to its business partners and industry customers on September 3rd, 2006 in Riyadh. “Awal Qatfa” will be unique as it will be ‘ready-to-eat’ food that will be packaged in Tetra Pak’s revolutionary Tetra RecartTM.

“Awal Qatfa” is being launched shortly after Al-Rabie finalised its agreement with Tetra Pak Saudi Arabia by investing over SR. 60 Million in the development and production of the Tetra RecartTM packaging solution.

Mr. Monther Al Harthi, Managing Director of Al-Rabie, expressed that the “Awal Qatfa” brand will deliver a wide range of food products, many of which will be ready-to-eat. Initially, “Awal Qatfa” will be launched in traditional Arabic beans, commonly known as ‘Foul’. He added that these new products are packed using advanced technology that will revolutionise the food industry within the GCC market and will open new opportunities for Al-Rabie in the area of food products such as ready-to-eat fruit and vegetables that could include beans, diced tomatoes, carrots and so on.  Mr. Monther Al Harthi went on to say that he is confident that “Awal Qatfa” will be able to expand its market share into the canned food industry; estimated at a value of SR. 1.5 Billion annually.

In addition to investing in the new technology Al-Rabie will be heavily investing in building brand equity for “Awal Qatfa”, which the company plans to sell through distributor agreements that will be negotiated throughout the GCC. The Tetra RecartTM packaging technology will allow “Awal Qatfa” to lead the market change with the system in operation from September 2006.

 “Tetra RecartTM will transform the face of food packaging in the GCC market,” confirms Amar Zahid, Managing Director of Tetra Pak Saudi Arabia. “The convenience of the package to the consumer and the potential it has to broaden the scope of foods available in well protected, lightweight, easy to open, hygienic and recyclable packaging is a remarkable step forward in the food industry,” he added.

The main focus during the development of the new packaging was on providing consumers with greater convenience – with easier and safe handling – and the ease of opening and serving. Another benefit is that when unopened, the contents stay fresh and healthy without the need for refrigeration for up to 18 months. The package itself delivers significant overall system cost savings. It is made predominantly out of paper so it is suitable for recycling.

Al-Rabie Managing Director, Mr. Monther Al Harthi, closed the event by saying that this investment fits with the company’s core strategy to develop new and profitable growth opportunities in the years to come.


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