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Fri 9 Mar 2018 01:22 AM

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Peruvian superfoods 'in high demand' from UAE consumers

Avocados, quinoa, chia seeds, pomegranates, cocoa berries all in high demand, says senior official

Peruvian superfoods 'in high demand' from UAE consumers

Peru is seeing a significant rise in demand for its superfoods from the UAE, according to a senior official.

Alvaro Silva-Santisteban F, director of the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Tourism of Peru, said the superfoods most in demand in 2017 were avocados, quinoa, chia seeds, pomegranates, cocoa nibs and berries.

Other top performing products included grapes, asparagus, mangoes, organic bananas, jalapeños, coffee, chilies, and pulses.

“The UAE currently ranks 17th in total global Peruvian exports. We saw a 38 percent increase in total exports in January to November 2017 when compared to the same period in 2016.  Our non-traditional exports to the UAE, which include superfoods, have grown by 69 percent during that time," he said.

“In fact, agricultural exports were among our best performing sectors in 2017, partly due to the healthy eating trend, but also because of the growing global recognition of Peru as a centre of gastronomy,” he added.

Peru is one of the most biodiverse countries on the planet, boasting 28 of 32 of the world’s climates. This makes it the perfect environment for the cultivation of food products with high nutritional value.

Known as superfoods, these foods have a much higher concentration of vitamins, nutrients, minerals, and energy than other fresh produce.

According to Euromonitor, naturally healthy foods are predicted to be the fastest growing category within the health and wellness food segment in the coming years, forecast to reach $291 billion by 2021.

The rate of growth is likely to be higher in the Gulf region, where local governments are stepping up their efforts to address the incidence of obesity and diabetes.

"Peruvian cuisine has already reached Dubai, and we look forward to deepening awareness of our position as the world’s superfoods pantry to further boost trade of these products in 2018,” Silva-Santisteban added.

Peruvian companies this week showcased a wide range of organic products, including quinoa, amaranth, chia and sesame seeds; and unique produce like maca root, sacha inchi, purple corn, camu camu and lucuma at Gulfood 2018.

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