Gulfood, one of the world’s top exhibitions for the food, drink, foodservice and hospitality industry is preparing for its biggest edition yet with four exciting days of dedicated events and programmes, including the co-located Ingredients Middle East Exhibition, Restaurant & Cafe Middle East, Emirates International Salon Culinaire, the renowned Dubai International Food and Safety Conference and a comprehensive programme for the beverage industry.
To meet the increased industry demand, Gulfood will expand to a record 80,000 sqm, and will for the first time be held at two local venues; the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre and Airport Expo Dubai.
Airport Expo Dubai will provide a showcase for hundreds of products and exhibitors now able to participate for the first time, including major new country pavilions such as Afghanistan, Hong Kong, Iran, Kuwait, Pakistan and many more.
Gulfood will welcome over 3,300 international companies keen to establish and build upon the regions reputation as an important trading hub. With over 90 percent of food items in the GCC imported, new opportunities for producers and distributors are extensive and this growing market has attracted 80 government sponsored country pavilions specialising in the food and hospitality sector such Bulgaria, Iceland, Montenegro and Russia, among others, as well as representation from government trade bodies and export associations.
All of these features will provide the region with a comprehensive, one-stop-supply-shop where visitors and exhibitors can learn about the dynamics of each country’s food industry, discuss business and trade opportunities, and network with companies from every major producer nation.
“Gulfood is an event of true international stature; the biggest brands and some of the most recognisable names in the industry will be using it as a platform to bring their products and services to one of the largest buying communities in the world. Gulfood has become the primary event for Arab companies and government organisations to demonstrate their increasing contribution to the growing hospitality sector,” said Helal Saeed Almarri, CEO, Dubai World Trade Centre, organiser of the event.
Ingredients Middle East will co-locate with Gulfood to form one of the world’s first exhibitions to bring together the industrial sector with food manufacturers and processors. Leading ingredients companies such as Agus, Al Kahaleej, Cargill, Doehler, Fanar and Palsgaard will be displaying leading products that range from preservatives and additives to dietary supplements and nutrients.
Commenting on his participation at Ingredients Middle East, Mr. Grzegorz Maczynski, Director of expansion, Agus, “We see Ingredients Middle East as an excellent opportunity to meet with Middle East-based food manufacturers and food processing companies.
Ingredients Middle East provides an extended reach into key vertical markets. The combined events will provide an invaluable platform to bring suppliers and buyers from around the world to forge new relationships and drive the growth of the industry”.
Held alongside Gulfood, Restaurant & Café Middle East is a highly specialised trade exhibition designed to meet the needs of industry professionals involved in every step of the restaurant and café set up and operation. Participating companies include Bahraja, Villeroy & Boch, Victorinox and RAK Porcelain who will be bringing the very latest products and services in interior design, tableware, furnishing, flooring, kitchen and cooking equipment.
The world renowned Emirates International Salon Culinaire will return aimed to dazzle trade visitors and exhibitors alike with cookery demonstrations; live cooking competitions; ice carving demonstrations; buffet and banqueting showpieces; pastry and sugar set pieces; and bakery and confectionery innovations.
The industry’s most talented and creative chefs vie for a place at these exciting competitions which help expose aspiring chefs to some of the most cutting edge techniques, whilst giving them the opportunity to win coveted awards which can help further their promising careers.
The 4th Dubai International Food Safety Conference, organised by Dubai Municipality, will also be present to examine the challenges and issues in the Middle East market with renowned speakers from around the world. The conference attracts more than 900 delegates and will this year focus on the theme "Food Safety in Light of Food Security".
Speakers include many international industry experts such as Dr. Aisha Abushelaibi, Assistant Dean for Student Affairs College of Food and Agriculture from the United Arab Emirates University, Dr. Mohammed Yamani, Professor of Food Microbiology and Hygiene and Dean of the Faculty of Agriculture at the University of Jordan, Mr. Richard Sounsess, General Manager for Food Policy and Safety in the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF), Australia and many more.
Gulfood will also offer a comprehensive programme for the beverage industry, organised by Zenith International one of the world's leading drinks consultancies, the Beverage Opportunity Workshops will offer research and insights into issues that are critical to the beverage sector in the region.
Topics such as Global and Middle East Beverage Market Trends and Sustainability and Environmental Best Practice are but a few of highlights within this fascinating programme designed to assist the beverage sector identify the key trends and emerging opportunities in the industry.
The dedicated industry trade event is also helping exhibitors from across the globe leverage their investment in Gulfood to build a strategic business platform, take a bigger share of business with the region and utilise Dubai’s position as a re-exporting hub.
And visitors will also find it easier to find the right suppliers with the dedicated areas within Gulfood for specific products and services, ranging from packaging and labelling, through to beverage and beverage equipment. To help support growing industry needs and increasing market specialisation, these dedicated halls will offer visitors a comprehensive A-Z solution for the entire industry.
The 14th Gulfood Exhibition, organised by Dubai World Trade Centre, will be held at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre and Airport Expo Dubai from 23-26 February 2009. A complimentary transport service for visitors between the two venues will be available.
Gulfood is strictly a trade-only event and is open to business and trade visitors from within the industry only, proof of which must be provided at registration. General public and persons under the age of 21 will not be allowed into the exhibition.
Interested trade visitors are advised to pre-register online at www.gulfood.com
where they can qualify for free entry. Industry business professionals on the day of the show can buy either register at Airport Expo Dubai for free entry to both venues or visit Dubai International Convention Centre and purchase a Day Pass for AED 50, or a Four Day Pass for AED 100.