-Trade Event Records Million Dollar Deals Across all Sectors: Equipment, Packaging, Ingredients, Technology, Logistics-
Dubai, United Arab Emirates: The second edition of Gulfood Manufacturing 2015, the largest and most influential F&B manufacturing trade event in the Middle East, Africa and South East Asia (MEASA) region drew to a close in Dubai on 29th October, having delivered exceptional order books, confirmed deals and new market opportunities for its 1,500 international exhibitors. The key platform for the manufacturing, processing, packaging, logistics and service sectors of the F&B industry, the show generated millions of dollars in sales, with a number of exhibitors reporting complete sellout of their stands – a largely unreported occurrence for a trade event of this kind.
Trixie LohMirmand, Senior Vice President, Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) and organiser of Gulfood Manufacturing said: “From all perspectives Gulfood Manufacturing 2015 can be considered a success. Having launched the show in 2014 to deliver everything a growing region-wide F&B manufacturing industry needed, it is clear from the immediate increase in exhibitors, launches and business deals, as well as the enormously successful 2,000-strong hosted buyers programme that drove record sales this year, that we are meeting our objective.
“The F&B manufacturing industry is critical for each market in the MEASA region to be able to service and supply their growing populations with a sustainable, safe and secure food supply, and to positively contribute to their respective economies currently under strain from the weight of imports. It is clear from our exhibitors’ results that businesses in this region are serious about developing the sector – investing, learning and expanding.”
One of the largest suppliers of technology for the global food processing industry, German giant GEA reported exceptional results as a result of their participation this year. Robert Schmiehusen, Head of Sales for CIA and MEA at GEA said: “Not only were a number of significant orders signed, but we had an overwhelming level of interest from new markets – in particular this year from Pakistan. What was also interesting for us was that not only did we conclude sales with our known customers, but also with brand new and unknown customers who purchased on the spot. This show is not about coming to look, visitors here were coming to buy. We’re already planning a bigger presence for next year. For GEA this show is essential.”
With ingredients a core element for manufacturing, Gulfood Manufacturing proved a valuable marketplace for sourcing, as well as accessing the latest innovations in the industry. Döhler, the global producer, marketer and provider of technology-based natural ingredient systems and integrated solutions for the F&B industry, launched more than 80 new products at the show this year. According to Shashank Vengasarkar, Managing Director, Döhler Middle East said: “We have participated at Gulfood for many years, and when the DWTC approached us in 2013 about creating a dedicated show for Gulfood Manufacturing we weren’t confident in its standalone success. How wrong we were – this show is a runaway success. Not only have we introduced more than 80 new products to the market, we’ve conducted more than 100 productive customer meetings each day. What we need now is for the show to be a day longer – three days is too short!”
This sentiment was shared by Gerhard Vogt, Managing Partner of United Food Technology who identified the strong return on investment that Gulfood Manufacturing delivers: “With the number of customers we engage with and the equipment and technology that we have already sold (more than half our entire stock on the stand, with a value of more than AED2.5million), this show is essential.”
Food equipment manufacturers reported brisk trade throughout the event, with strong sales generated across all specialist sectors. British processing equipment and system supplier to the bakery sector, Baker Perkins reported all-day queues of visitors to their stand. Alan Mordue, Sales Manager for the company said: “We doubled the size of our stand this year, and it’s been even busier. Bread has been the order of the day, and with bread suppliers from all parts of the region present at the show, there has been excellent interest in both our established and new products.”
Trade visitors to the show were equally pleased with the ability to source equipment for specialist needs. Dr. Fadi Kabatilo, Deputy General Manager for a Jordanian company specialised in spices, herbs and nuts, travelled to Dubai looking for three specific machines. “Competition is strong in our segment of the food market, and we need to stay ahead. Attending Gulfood Manufacturing has been invaluable for us – suppliers of equipment have been helpful and we have already purchased two of the machines we needed.”
Swiss company Brunner Anliker, which specialises in the manufacture of professional machinery for cutting, chopping, grating, grinding and de-clumping of foodstuffs introduced a number of new products at the show this year. Rene Wyler, Export Sales Manager for the company said: “Our new products generated a large number of orders in addition to the solid business enquiries we received. Our success for more than 50 years has been in the distinctive ‘drawing cut’ our machines use – not only does this prevent the unnecessary loss of nutrients and vitamins as the cell structure of even the most delicate fruits and vegetables is barely affected, but the biotechnological method helps them to stay fresher for longer. This is important in this region as well as internationally.”
The business opportunities presented by the burgeoning Halal food industry were highlighted at Gulfood Manufacturing, in particular for specialist ingredients and equipment manufacturers. Companies such as Hill Brush, specialists in manufacturing cleaning equipment for the food industry returned to the show this year following a successful debut show in 2014. According to Charles Coward, Commercial Director for Hill Brush, “We received excellent business leads last year and have followed up on the learnings we received regarding the region, returning this year with Halal certified hygiene tools as recognised these as critical for the market’s needs. This has resulted in an even more successful show for us this year.”
With packaging a critical component in maintaining the safety and integrity of food and beverage products, particularly in markets such as the MEASA region where harsh climates and a still developing infrastructure are factors, Gulfood Manufacturing played an important role in facilitating trade and connections with local, regional and international manufacturers and suppliers.
These included leaders in packaging and processing solutions for the F&B industry, Tetra Pak, which launched a number of new products, technological innovations, value-added services and held a number of knowledge seminars during the show. Dennis Jönsson, Global President and CEO of Tetra Pak Group said, "This region holds great importance for Tetra Pak and our presence at Gulfood Manufacturing enabled us to spend valuable time with both longstanding customers and many new potential partners. Under the theme “The Difference” we were able to showcase the innovation that drives our customer-centric approach to business and highlight the exceptional value we constantly aim to deliver along the length of our value chain. Leadership for Tetra Pak means enabling our customers to lead in their markets and in their segments – we believe this exhibition delivered that.”
Ishida Europe, a leading supplier of automated solutions for the food industry, showcased their market-leading ranges of weighing, quality control and packing line technology at Gulfood Manufacturing. Torsten Giese, Exhibition & PR Manager for the company said: “This year we generated 10 confirmed orders and around 250 strong leads – our best show in the Middle East yet - with business from many countries and regions such as UAE, KSA and Egypt, as well as emerging markets such as Iran and Iraq. The establishment of this separate manufacturing show from the main Gulfood exhibition in February has been achieved seamlessly and is particularly appropriate for us.”
Country pavilions at the show reported robust results, with David Harrison, Group Leader for the UK Pavilion commenting: “Once again Gulfood Manufacturing has raised the bar for processing and packaging equipment manufacturers exporting to the region. Reports from the 40 exhibiting companies in the group praised the quality and number of visitors to their stands and quality sales leads, with many exhibitors seeing potential combined lead values exceeding £1.5million (AED8.4 million). Gulfood Manufacturing and the Middle East remains a popular and key export region for United Kingdom manufacturers with increasing sales potential year on year.”
Adding significant value in the form of knowledge exchange, the Gulfood Manufacturing Conferences enjoyed strong attendance at all three summits - Next Generation Manufacturing, F&B Innovations and the Food Logistics Forum. Offering insights on industry developments, critical business factors and best practice in the industry, the three day agenda included keynote addresses from senior representatives of government and private sector.
“There is clear recognition of Gulfood Manufacturing as an essential platform for the industry, and over the past three days has delivered far-reaching connections, facilitated record business deals across the board, and contributed to the ongoing development of F&B manufacturing in the region. We look forward to continuing this success in 2016,” said LohMirmand.
Gulfood Manufacturing 2016 will take place from 7 – 9 November 2016 at the Dubai World Trade Centre.