The 22nd edition of Gulfood opened its doors at Dubai World Trade Centre today and will run until 2 March.
Spread across 1,000,000 ft2, the exhibition is expected to receive up to 90,000 food professionals from 150 countries over five days.
Dubai World Trade Centre senior vice president, exhibitions & event management, Trixie LohMirmand, commented: “Buyer demand for healthy and halal products, as well as trusted resource provenance, has turned Gulfood 2017 into a window to global food sector reinvention.
“The show is already underlining its international reputation as a hotbed for unique business opportunities.”
His Highness Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and UAE Minister of Finance opened Gulfood 2017, and during his tour of the venue, was offered a snapshot of the innovation impacting the F&B industry in the region.
From the latest in health, wellness and free-from to on-the-go, artisan and affordable-convenience, the show lifts the curtain on the new concepts and products evolving the global F&B scene.
Some 5,000 exhibitors from 120 countries will be showcasing their products and more than 2,000 participants will debut at the show.
The geographic influence of Gulfood is demonstrated via 120 national pavilions with four countries – Azerbaijan, Finland, Malta and Somalia – represented for the first time.
China, India, Italy, Spain and the USA will mount the largest international pavilions, with Egypt, Jordan, Iran, Lebanon and Morocco showcasing regional capabilities.
The year’s show has a new layout with eight individual food commodity trading markets covering Beverages; Dairy; Fats & Oils; Health, Wellness & Free-From; Pulses, Grains & Cereals; Meat & Poultry; Power Brands and World Food.
Gulfood also hosts the world’s biggest annual Halal food sourcing trade show-in-show in Halal World Food.
Back for the fourth year in a row, Halal World Food features more than 1,000 international specialist Halal food brands and companies.
The annual Emirates Culinary Guild International Salon Culinaire – the world’s largest single-entry chefs’ competition – is another of Gulfood’s key highlights.
The 2017 Salon Culinaire will see more than 1,000 of the region’s top professional chefs, pastry chefs, cooks and bakers compete for honours accredited by an expert panel mandated by the World Association of Chefs Societies.
Meanwhile, in a ceremony tonight (February 26) at the Conrad hotel, the winners of the eighth Gulfood Innovation Awards will be recognised for best-in-class excellence and innovation across the region’s food and drink industry.