Marwan Abdulaziz Janahi, executive director, Dubai Science Park tells Catering News Middle East why the growth in specialist foods is driving demand for bespoke business facilities.
What are the core services of Dubai Science Park?
Dubai Science Park is home to over 280 business partners throughout the science sector. We are focused on achieving our vision of becoming the most vibrant science community in the Middle East. We support start-ups and international firms looking for a regional base for their operations, by providing a vibrant community. Dubai Science Park is a holistic freezone environment of science-related entities, comprising flexible, bespoke space; legislative and business administration support; and zero corporation tax, with 100% foreign ownership. Our partners are able to freely operate alongside industry peers in an environment that inspires collaboration, innovation and business growth.
What new initiatives are you launching this year?
Having rebranded last year, we are looking forward to the year ahead. In 2016, we will officially open our headquarters building, two state-of-the-art -towers, which will service the increasing demand from science-related businesses for space in Dubai’s new growth corridor of South Barsha. When the buildings open to our new business partners, they will provide more than half a million square feet of office space. The inspiring architecture forms a glass shaped jewel that dominates the developing skyline and the surrounding water features and landscaping deliver a scenic and professional feel to the flexible office space. In addition, we will launch phase two of our warehouses – bespoke space that can be used as a controlled environment for storage and manufacturing purposes.
Why have you chosen to sponsor the Gulfood conference in 2016?
Food innovation is a critical sector for us. The issue of the reliance of imports to cater for the needs of the UAE population is a critical one and we are constantly working with our partners to help address this issue. The food industry, and in particular, the focus on the development of Halal food and Halal testing, is burgeoning, and requires bespoke facilities and skills. Gulfood is an excellent forum to discuss these issues, and we are delighted to be part of the conversation and look forward to hearing the delegates discuss ways in which we can drive the sector forward.
What aspect of the conference are you most looking forward to?
A key element of our offering is providing a platform for discussion of the issues the science sector is trying to address. As such, we look forward to taking the opportunity to speak with new and existing contacts to understand what the industry needs to progress so that we can help provide the solution.
What key trend/ factor will impact the F&B industry in 2016?
Gluten-free products are mostly imported from abroad and this is primarily because local food manufacturers do not have the know-how – be that in technology or in food research and development – to produce such products for the mass market. This trend will have a significant impact on the F&B industry in the next few years and there will be an increase in the technology transfer of gluten-free and other foods that are free from additives, etc., to local companies, which will be key to the growth of the food industry. At DSP, we are ready for this trend, and can provide bespoke office and manufacturing space for those who are looking to explore it.
BNC Publishing is the conference producer for Gulfood 2016, and Catering News Middle East is the official publication of the exhibition. To view the Gulfood 2016 agenda, click on this link.