SIAL Mideast 'getting bigger and bigger'
Abu Dhabi, October 24, 2012
SIAL Middle East, a leading professional trade exhibition for the food, drink and hospitality industry, is set to welcome eight new international pavilions to this year’s event, registering a 60 per cent growth in overseas market interest.
The expo is being held at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre from November 26 to 28 in strategic partnership with Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority (ADFCA).
A total of 21 international pavilions with exhibitors from four continents will participate in the three-day industry showcase, said the event organisers.
The list of countries returning to exhibit include the US, China, Turkey, France, Vietnam, Italy, Pakistan, Argentina, Iran, Korea, Thailand, Tunisia and the UAE, with eight new destinations – Bulgaria, Brazil, Kenya, the Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia and Taiwan - making their SIAL Middle East debut.
The event organisers have already seen a spike in enquiries from overseas, with international exhibitors keen to develop partnerships with buyers and distributors in the GCC food sector.
According to a 2011 study conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit, demand for food imports will double by 2020 to match the growing requirements of residents with higher levels of income, climbing to $53.1 billion by the end of the decade versus $25.8 billon in 2010.
“A growing number of international destinations are targeting SIAL Middle East as a direct entry point into the GCC market. We have eight new international pavilions on the show floor this year, including a showcase of the best beef from Brazil and a dairy pavilion from Bulgaria,” remarked Mohamed Jalal Al Reyaysa, ADFCA's official spokesperson and the chairman of SIAL's higher organizing committee.
“If we look at dairy production, for example, Saudi produces nearly 30 per cent of its domestic demand, the UAE just 17 per cent, and the remaining GCC countries produce less than 10 per cent of their needs; so the market is extremely receptive when it comes to partnerships with leading international producers,” said Chris Fountain, the managing director of Turret Media, organizers of the SIAL Middle East.
Underscoring that potential Dimitar Zorov, the chairman of the Bulgarian Association of Dairy Processors, said, “Our presence at SIAL gives local and regional distributors, and importers, a great opportunity to build direct business relations with Bulgarian producers, especially as we embark on an ambitious three-year programme of promotion in the local market through our ‘EU Dairy Daily’ initiative.”
“The Middle East is an important market for Brazilian beef, accounting for approximately 30 per cent of our exports, and we believe that there is [still] huge potential” said Gabriela Tonini, Technical co-ordinator for the Association of Brazilian Beef Exporters.
“Regional governments are fostering their own agricultural policies, as the issue of food security remains a priority,” said Fountain.
SIAL Middle East has grown rapidly since its inaugural edition in 2010, and in 2011 welcomed 466 exhibitors from 43 countries, and 9,707 visitors, representing a 55 per cent and 34 per cent increase on 2010 figures, respectively.
SIAL Middle East will also incorporate three new events as part of a co-location agreement, with Rice & Grains 2012, ITCA Abu Dhabi - the new global event from the International Travel Catering Association (ITCA) , and the Emirates International Date Palm Festival added to the event line-up.
The quartet of exhibitions will welcome more than 1,000 international exhibitors including 30 national pavilions from Argentina to Vietnam.-TradeArabia News Service