DUBAI / WAM
HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and UAE Minister of Finance, on Sunday opened 25th edition of Gulfood 2020, the annual food and beverage (F&B), trade show at Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC).
An open invitation for F&B producers to demonstrate how they are ‘Rethinking Food’ to serve a global population that is set to race past eight billion by 2030, the five-day mega exhibition, which runs until February 20, has attracted high-calibre interest from government ministers, trade delegations and national organisations.
The show highlights latest F&B innovations and explores exhaustive business opportunities as the global F&B sector seeks to keep pace with changing consumer habits and spiralling spending, which now stands at more than $7.2 trillion annually, according to the Gulfood 2020 Industry Outlook Report.
Touring the exhibition, HH Sheikh Hamdan was given a snapshot of the latest innovations and technologies that are redefining the regional food sector landscape at DWTC this week amid growing demand.
Gulfood 2020 will showcase large-scale innovation in the F&B sector, with a wide array of industry disruptors exhibiting innovative products and solutions, new-to-region flavours and products, and the global networking opportunities with F&B businesses from every corner of the world.
“The rising demand for sustainability in the F&B sector, coupled with consumer trends that have shifted dramatically and the growing shift away from animal-based foods, headline the Gulfood 2020 agenda. The challenge for the F&B industry is to fast-track innovation and provide safe and sustainable food sources for an increasingly eco-conscious global population. Gulfood’s 25th anniversary is the perfect place to experience, analyse and collaborate on developing solutions that will propel the F&B sector into this thrilling new decade of opportunity,” said Trixie LohMirmand, Executive Vice President, Exhibitions and Events, DWTC.
Running alongside the main exhibition, the second edition of the three-day Gulfood Innovation Summit will bring together major players from across the international industry to examine the latest challenges and opportunities in the global F&B market.
With the food rethink narrative serving as the show’s guiding theme, a brand-new feature titled ‘STREAT will make its debut with street food pioneers Chef Chan Hon Meng, the first Michelin-starred hawker (street food) chef from Singapore’s celebrated Liao Fan Hawker Chan, and Tsuta by Chef Yuki Onishi, founder and executive chef of the Tsuta Japanese Soba Noodles, the world’s first Michelin-starred Ramen eatery.
Michelin-starred chef Massimo Bottura is joined by three Michelin-starred chef Elena Arzak, and chef Paco Pre. Joining the international chef trio are the region’s top culinary talents, including Nick Alvis and Scott Price of acclaimed Dubai restaurant Folly; Gregoire Berger of Ossiano, and Akmal Anuar of 3 Fils.
“I am impressed with the new culinary ideas in the UAE. The country is a vibrant place to dine right now and is also very inspiring for chefs and gourmands who are constantly searching for new cultural interactions,” said Bottura. “At Gulfood, I am showcasing a collection of our most iconic dishes from France as we travel through the evolution of our culinary world.”
Starting Monday and running until Wednesday, the Gulfood Innovation Summit has attracted a power-packed line-up of speakers including high-ranking ministers, thought-leaders and industry stalwarts.
Speakers taking to the Summit stage include Mariam bint Mohammed Saeed Hareb Al Mehairi, Minister of State for Food Security of the UAE; Prince Waleed Al Saud, President – Saudi Arabia Restaurant and Cafés Association, and Darine Al Khatib, Goodwill Ambassador, Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations.