The second edition of the Big Food & Beverage Forum, hosted by Catering News Middle East is currently underway at The Westin Dubai Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina, with more than 200 F&B professionals in attendance.
Attendees, sponsors and speakers are enjoying a morning of thought-provoking panel debates, expert sessions and interactive workshops tackling the key topics, trends and challenges impacting the F&B industry in 2016 and beyond.
Dubai Tourism’s senior communications manager Aida Al Busaidy kicked off the event with a keynote address on the value of the F&B industry as part of the wider tourism conversation in the emirate.
Following this, Dr. Basem Abdul Moneim, public health specialist, National Tobacco Control Programme outlined what the UAE’s impending smoking ban means for the F&B industry.
Panel sessions at today’s event include “Creating a more sophisticated F&B landscape”, “A rising talent pool: but at what cost?” and “The trends shaping the UAE’s F&B landscape”.
Some exciting expert speakers will take to the stage, with Damien Rizzi, Colliers MENA senior asset manager – hospitality, to unveil an exclusive new report on maximising profitability in hotel restaurants; and Ali Sinaei, managing partner, Roundmenu, discussing consumer behavior trends and dining decisions.
Today’s programme will culminate with an on-stage interview with legendary British chef, restaurateur and author, Gary Rhodes OBE, to take place just before the networking lunch break.
Commenting on his participation at The Big F&B Forum, Rhodes said: “The reason I’m taking part in the forum, is to take in, realise and recognise the professional thoughts of the many top F&B representatives Dubai holds.
“The industry has become almost a fashion world, with styles and concepts constantly changing. It’s good to discover what might be happening next.”
Some of the most prominent, influential catering and hospitality suppliers in the region are sponsoring the event, including PATH Bar School African + Eastern, the Support Sponsor, which will be conducting a craft hops tasting session during the lunch break; Coffee Planet, the Exclusive Coffee Partner; Lunch Sponsor, Banvit, the leading poultry processor in Turkey; and Soft Drinks Sponsor, Waterfalls Brands, which supplies high-end, carefully selected beverage products to hotels, bars, clubs and restaurants.
Exhibitors are foodservice equipment supplier TSSC, thermal foodservice technology leader, Rational; uniform and tableware supplier A. Ronai; Pulsar Food Stuff trading, which supplies minibar and snack products to the hospitality industry; Hotelity, a one-stop shop for F&B and hospitality needs; American Garden, supplier of high-quality American ingredients; and Quooker, a Netherlands-based company which supplies a product that immediately dispenses clean filtered boiling and chilled water.
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