Gulfood 2024: F&B World Unites in Dubai


This 29th edition of Gulfood is anticipated to be the biggest yet, with 49% of the 5500+ confirmed exhibitors participating for the first time…reports Asian Lite News

Gulfood 2024, the world’s largest global food and beverage sourcing event, started at the Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC). Gulfood is taking place from 19th to 23rd February 2024, bringing together F&B communities worldwide to discuss the future of this fast-changing sector. This 29th edition is anticipated to be the biggest yet, with 49% of the 5500+ confirmed exhibitors participating for the first time.

Dr. Amna bint Abdullah Al Dahak Al Shamsi, the UAE Minister of Climate Change and Environment, opened this year’s Inspire Conference as the keynote speaker.

She spoke about the importance of promoting local produce as a way of strengthening food security and taking action on climate change, commenting, “The future of the food industry and food security is a timely topic. The rising temperatures of our planet are putting our natural resources in danger, and we must all act now… This year, on our national environment day, we focused on collaboration and started working together for sustainable local products. We invite all our relevant stakeholders to join efforts in empowering local products.”

She also touched on agri-tech as a key driver of local food production, stating, “We must all ensure and continue to promote the advancement of advanced technologies in agriculture production aligned with the UAE’s climate conditions, which facilitates all of us to adapt to a sustainable agricultural system, including organic, vertical, and agrotech farming. Our national food strategy aims to enhance local production sustainability through the use of modern technology”.

Later in the day, in a keynote session on how the F&B industry can transform, better collaborate and become more agile, Dr. Obaid Saif Hamad Al Zaabi, President of the Arab Authority for Agricultural Investment and Development (AAAID), spoke about the AAAID’s efforts towards food sustainability through financing small-scale farmers.

Gulfood is at the heart of the business community, propelling sector conversations from agenda to action, bringing the industry together to convene in the first key F&B industry event of the year, unveiling new products and innovations, and creating an international platform for business opportunities, including 127 country pavilions, with first time participants Armenia, Azerbaijan and Venezuela, and welcoming back returning pavilions including France.

Axel Baroux, French Trade & Invest Commissioner, emphasised the significance of this event, stating, “Our participation at Gulfood 2024 embodies the strong synergy between France and the UAE, transcending mere trade to represent our shared visions for quality, sustainability, and innovation in the food sector. This event signifies our ongoing commitment to enriching our trade relations and fostering future collaborations. This year’s Gulfood is more than a trade show; it’s a testament to the enduring partnership between France and the UAE, showcasing France’s commitment to global health trends and culinary excellence”.

Sheikh Mohammed tours Gulfood

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, toured Gulfood 2024. He said that the event highlights the UAE’s growing role in facilitating knowledge exchange and fostering partnerships to advance excellence in vital global sectors. This role is firmly rooted in the nation’s commitment to encouraging the adoption of innovative solutions aimed at enhancing sustainable economic growth and human wellbeing, he said.

Sheikh Mohammed noted that organising events like Gulfood forms part of the UAE’s efforts to foster new solutions for raising the efficiency of global supply chains. The event also serves as a major platform for accelerating global collaboration in the food sector, reflecting the UAE’s keenness to nurture partnerships between public and private sectors and key stakeholders. He stated that Dubai is well positioned to play a key role in enhancing global food security due to its position as a hub for technology and innovation, its status as a pivotal node in global trade, and its high-quality infrastructure and connectivity.

Under the theme ‘Real Food, Real Business’, Gulfood 2024 will bring together global brands including: Saudi Made, Apical, Americana, Wilmar, Al Jameel International, Sadia, Jetro, Kinza, Barakat, Ahmad Tea, Zar Group, Al Watania Poultry, and IFFCO – as well as thousands of new exhibitors – to showcase authentic food products, ingredients, and culinary practices, make real business connections and seal in excess of USD 12 billion in commercial deals.

Gulfood is creating a platform for companies in the food industry to present their products, services, and solutions to influential buyers from across the globe, facilitating intercontinental business deals and serving as the ultimate focal point for the world of food and beverage sourcing.

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