Gulfood 2021 – Opening New Trade Opportunities in UAE's F&B Industry

Gulfood 2021 – Opening New Trade Opportunities in UAE’s F&B Industry

The recently concluded Gulfood 2021 event in Dubai was one of the world’s largest Food and Beverage (F&B) events attracting over 2,500 companies across 85 countries. The primary motive of the event was to present the main market trends in the F&B industry and to highlight new innovations, consumer behaviour patterns, revive communication links between thousands of key players in the industry and open up new trade opportunities.  

The event unearthed incredible business potential for F&B companies in the South American region. Several Latin American countries participated in Gulfood 2021 and have made an appearance with innovative products that attracted the attention of the attendees, obtaining the opportunity to sign important commercial agreements. Key personals from these countries mentioned that they are focusing on reconnecting and restructuring their business strategies to overcome the impact of pandemic on their operations. They considered Dubai to be the key location for introducing their products as it is a gateway to tap into the Middle East market.

Food Product Display by Latin American Countries in Gulfood 2021 Event

Mexico – Exhibited a wide variety of products including grains, fruits, natural sweeteners and organic products. The products received a positive response, especially for the sweeteners. Similarly a company with more than 60 years in the market presented a variety of sweet and spicy fruits, meat products, beans, soups and stews without preservatives or colourings. 

Peru – Farmers and entrepreneurs in Peru have adapted their products to new consumer trends, as people are becoming more aware of eating food that is not harmful to their health. Some of these high quality Peruvian foods that promote immunity of the consumers were showcased in the event. Other food products such as Quinoa, chestnuts, energy drinks and fruits were also displayed.

Colombia boasted about their innovative products, which uses advanced technology to extract antioxidants from the fruit to be used as an ingredient in food and cosmetics. Six Colombian companies presented meats, biscuits, cocoa, coffee and exotic fruits. Furthermore, the demand for Colombian meat increased by 300% as they won several contracts during the event.

Costa Rica presented coffee, sugar, dried fruits, raw materials for juices, such as banana puree and cocktail mixers in the event. A rich and healthy energy drink, which is 300 times more potent than sugar, with no calories, no carbohydrates, and also having healing properties in diseases such as blood pressure and diabetes was also displayed.

Investment Opportunities in UAE F&B Industry

The Gulfood 2021, was a huge success with the number of new trade partnerships that happened during the event. Despite a global economic slowdown because of the pandemic, the UAE continues to be one of the fastest-growing F&B sectors in the world. Events like Gulfood not only play a critical role in reviving local F&B industry but also solidifying Dubai and the UAE’s position as a major F&B destination across the globe. The country will continue to attract F&B players across different countries because of the existing lucrative market conditions.

Research Konnection is a leading market research company in Dubai specializing in F&B industry market research, feasibility studies and business setups. Please feel free to reach out to us if you are planning to start or expand your food business in UAE.

Author: Waqas Siddiqui
The author is the Managing Director of Research Konnection, a Dubai based market research and consulting firm that helps local and international companies to identify emerging business opportunities and successfully expand in the Gulf region. The author can be reached at