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Gulfood was a show-stopper.

This years record participation at Gulfood comes as Dubais position as the regional hub for hospitality, trade and tourism is accelerated by the emirates confirmed hosting of the World Expo in 2020, which is fuelling further market growth opportunities for the global food industry. Gulfood has grown consistently over the last 27 years to become a significant driver for global food and beverage markets and is a key enabler in Dubais status as an international events destination and trading hub, comments Trixie LohMirmand, senior VP of the Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC), organisers of Gulfood.

The inaugural World Food Security Summit a Gulfood Leaders Event welcomed over 300 high-ranking government and industry leaders to address the importance of securing a stable, cost-effective and safe supply of food for the worlds growing population.

Futurelife, a South African brand making a huge impact here at home, entrenched its entrance into the UAE market at Gulfood. Through the show, we established vital partnerships with local manufacturers and distributors to grow the Futurelife brand in this region, maintains Shaun Harris, MD of Futurelife, noting that this market for enhanced, or functional, food and beverages continues to grow in step with changing consumer health and wellness lifestyles. As an overall global trend in functional food and beverage consumption, consumers are navigating wellness with greater breadth and depth of knowledge and theres a keen focus on clean, real food. Having established a good foothold in the South African market, we have solid plans to grow our footprint into other markets as well, he adds.The fair also saw hundreds of halal manufacturers, processors and distributors from more than 50 countries convening at the first Halal World Food.

Numerous other South African companies exhibited at Gulfood, including Boland Pulp, Good Hope Meat Supply, Great Heart of Africa Foods, Karan Beef, Montagu Dried Fruit, Natural Herbs and Spices, Sage Kitchen, Southern Canned Products and Tiger Brands, among others.

South Africa has been participating at Gulfood with a national pavilion for many years and each year, our participants are coming to us with terrific feedback, states Sudhir Mannie, Consul (Economic), South African Consulate General in Dubai.

The Department of Trade and Industry (dti) will be hosting a South African Pavilion at Gulfood 2015 and has extended an invite to local companies to apply to participate through the Export Marketing and Investment Assistance (EMIA) scheme. EMIA aims to develop export markets for South African products and services and to recruit new foreign direct investment into the country. The deadline for the submission of completed EMIA National Pavilion application forms is 19 September.

One of the worlds largest annual food and hospitality shows welcomed record numbers in 2014.

On 21 February, HH Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, deputy ruler of Dubai and Minister of Finance and Industry, officially opened Gulfood 2014, which saw tens of thousands of trade visitors from around the world walk its halls. With a record 113 398m in exhibition space and 4 500 companies from 120 countries participating, Gulfood 2014 is the largest and most international edition in the events history.

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Publication:South African Food Review
Date:May 5, 2014
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