Middle East

OARC opens in Sohar.

Oman opens $385m aluminium rolling plant

By Jenny Eagle

Oman Aluminium Rolling Company (OARC) has opened a $385m plant in Sohar, north of the capital Muscat, which will be operational by the end of Q1 2014.

GCC looks to Turkey for food investments

GCC looks to Turkey for food investments

By Eliot Beer

Two Gulf investment vehicles have bought major stakes in Turkish food producers in recent weeks, as Turkey positions itself as a major halal food producer.

McDonald’s reaffirms commitment to halal

McDonald’s reaffirms commitment to halal

McDonald’s has said it will strive toward the development of harmonised halal standards across the Middle East, as it reaffirmed its commitment to various requirements in place.

Middle East hungry for more seafood

Middle East hungry for more seafood

By Ankush Chibber

Earlier this year, Oman embarked on one of the most ambitious food production projects in the Middle East when it announced plans to invest US$1.29bn in fisheries development from 2013 to 2020.

Lack of access to water is a crucial stumbling block on the path to food security in the Middle East

Abu Dhabi hopes to lead agricultural revolution

By Noel Ebdon

The first Global Forum for Innovations in Agriculture (GFIA) is set to take place in Abu Dhabi early next year, aiming to turn the spotlight on the future of agriculture in the region.

The Middle East has some of the fastest growth rates in the global food industry - so how can start-ups tap into that?

Start-ups still have a strong chance in Middle East market

By Noel Ebdon

Breaking into the food and beverage market can be a challenge for many start-up companies, leading many businesses to either sink without a trace or opt for the franchise market rather than set up from scratch.

Without a reliable water supply, food self-sufficiency is a pipe dream...

Water decides the self-sufficiency issue

By Ankush Bhai Chibber

The Middle East water shortage is fast reaching crippling proportions — killing the dream of self-sufficiency in food production.

Many companies market non-alcoholic beers as 'malt-based soft drinks' to avoid any association with alcohol

Non-alcoholic beer thrives in MENA region

By Noel Ebdon

Low/non-alcoholic beer is the fastest growing beer category of the past five years, with a 7% volume CAGR, although off a low base, according to a Euromonitor International analysis.

If regional conflict were to close both the Suez Canal and the Strait of Hormuz, Gulf governments could find it hard getting food into their countries

Report: Middle East faces food insecurity

By Noel Ebdon

Food security in the Middle East could be under threat due to continuing political instability in the region, according to a report from Chatham House, also known as the Royal Institute of International Affairs.

Food companies looking for success in the Middle East must innovate to survive, says XTC

Evolution is key to Middle East expansion

By Noel Ebdon

Food companies must continue to evolve the way they make and market their products for the region’s consumers, or face the possibility of being forced out of the market altogether, according to an industry consultant.

McDonald's is among the many successful companies in the region with a franchising model

Food franchising set to grow in MENA region

By Noel Ebdon

Many global food and beverage brands are turning to franchising as a blueprint for expansion, with franchised outlets now making up the lion’s share of the Middle Eastern food market.

Kerry has said it intends to use the UAE as a hub for the Middle Eastern, North African and Turkish markets

Kerry Group moves into Middle East

By Noel Ebdon

Global ingredients and flavours company Kerry Group is the latest to step into the Middle East, in line with recent studies showing growing consumer demand for processed foods across the region.

(Picture credit: Iqbal Osman)

Irish Dairy Board invests $27m in Saudi halal cheese production

By Fiona Barry

The Irish Dairy Board (IDB) has invested €20m ($27m) in a dairy manufacturing and technology facility in Saudi Arabia, “to access the important dairy growth markets in the Middle East and North Africa region, supplying the Islamic Halal market segment”.

Saudi Arabian chicken consumption is second only to Qatar

Packaging manufacturer expands into Middle Eastern market

By Noel Ebdon

One of the largest chicken producers in Saudi Arabia has teamed up with one of Europe’s leading multi-material packaging manufacturers, LINPAC Packaging, in a new deal that looks set to have great impact on both the companies’ presence within the region,...

Qatar's neighbour Bahrain has already lifted restrictions on Japanese agricultural products, which were put in place following the nuclear power disaster in 2011

Japan seeks to end Qatar food imports ban

By Noel Ebdon

Japan has appealed to the State of Qatar to lift restrictions on food imports from the Asian country following the Fukushima nuclear power plant accident in 2011, when a large number of countries imposed restrictions on Japan over fears of importing radiated...

Australian lamb exports boosted by demand from Middle East and China

Australia sees surge for lamb and mutton exports

By Carina Perkins

Australian lamb and mutton exports were boosted by a surge in shipments to China and the Middle East last year, according to the latest data from Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA).

Australian beef exports are performing well

CIS demand boosts Australian beef

By Carina Perkins

Australian beef exports to the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) saw strong growth in July, boosted by demand from Kazakhstan and Russia.

Pizza has become global - but cheese making is still difficult in some areas

KMC eyes Middle Eastern promise for imitation cheese ingredients


Starch specialist KMC says it has developed two new starches for imitation cheese to cut costs and bring hard cheese alternatives to parts of the world where dairy ingredients may be difficult to handle or source, including the Middle East and North Africa.

An unconventional approach to capture the flavour of China

Case study: Firmenich

An unconventional approach to capture the flavour of China

By RJ Whitehead

According to Pierre-Alain Ceralli, Firmenich’s vice-president for flavours in China, the country now represents 20% of the total flavour industry’s potential. Furthermore, as China transforms its economy from export-led GDP to a domestic-led economic...

Dohler expands MENA might with Delta Aromatic acquisition

Dohler expands MENA might with Delta Aromatic acquisition

By RJ Whitehead

Already a mainstay in the Middle East ingredients market, Dohler has now announced further expansion in the region following its acquisition of the fruit processing and flavour unit of Delta Aromatic in Egypt.

Asia's natural, healthy cultural heritage is driving natural colour demand, says Chr Hansen CEO

Natural colours suit Asia’s dietary heritage: CEO of Chr Hansen

By Kacey Culliney

Chr Hansen recorded an 11% surge in sales across Asia Pacific in its H1 results, with natural colours proving strong for business; underpinned by a cultural dietary heritage favouring healthy food choice, according to CEO of the company.

Positive outlook for Australian sheep sector

Positive outlook for Australian sheep sector

By Melodie Michel

The Australian sheep industry expects a positive year in 2012, with a 4.2% increase in livestock numbers, Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) has announced.

ADF expands in response to increasing consumer demand for RTE foods

ADF to expand due to Indian demand for RTE foods

By Ankush Chibber

India-based ADF Foods is investing heavily in extending production capacity as it looks to expand aggressively in the domestic as well as international markets on the back of growing demand for ready-to-eat foods.


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