Lebanon 

    Nutritionists Discuss "Kitchen Cupboard" 

    Nutritionists from across Lebanon gathered in Beirut for a scientific discussion hosted by Nestlé Middle East, focused on innovative means to provide solely 100% simplified ingredients in packaged food. The gathering highlighted how iconic brand MAGGI is leading the way in providing tastier and healthier food, as part of its efforts towards achieving a number of the 20 commitments to society published by Nestlé Middle East: to “Simplify our ingredients list” “Help reduce the risk of under-nutrition through micronutrient fortification,” further “Reduce salt, sugar, and saturated fats in our products,” and “Increase vegetables, fiber-rich grains, pulses, nuts and seeds in our products.” MAGGI is moving towards including only ingredients people know and love in their products, ones they can likely find in their “Kitchen Cupboard,” as the initiative behind the transformation journey is named.

    Oman

    Oman's biggest food manufacturing project

    Oman’s Minister of Agriculture, Fuad bin Jaafar Al Sajwani, has presided over a Foundation Stone ceremony for Mazoon Dairy’s flagship dairy project at Al Sunayah.  The event formally marked the official launch of the main construction work on the state of the art RO 100 million project.  He was joined by the members of the board and the senior management of Mazoon Dairy, senior dignitaries of the Wilayat of Buraimi and the main contractor Al Adrak Trading and Contracting LLC at the event. The milestone marks the most important step yet in the development of one of the Sultanate’s biggest-ever food manufacturing projects that is an important goal in the nation’s drive towards self-sufficiency in food production. Guests at the ceremony were taken on a tour of the 15 km2 Al Sunayah site that will soon see the construction of the main dairy farm, feeding center, milking parlors, staff accommodation, management office building and an expansive road network. 

    Qatar 

    QDB Explores New Trade Markets 

    In its drive to promote Brand Qatar across new regional and international markets alike, Qatar Development Bank (QDB) – through the support of its specialist export wing, Tasdeer – participated at Anuga trade fair held in Cologne, one of the world’s well-known exhibitions for retailers in the food and beverage industry. This was QDB’s second time participating at the renowned biennial food expo, in line with the development organization’s consistent efforts to assist Qatari agri-food manufacturers promote their products in the international market and secure new export opportunities globally. Tipped as one of the “world's largest and most important trade fairs” for retail food trade and catering market, this year, Anuga trade fair, held from 7 to 11 October 2017, welcomed nearly 160,000 visitors and hosted more than 7,400 exhibitors from 107 countries. QDB’s pavilion exhibited both well-established local organizations as well as small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) from Qatar’s local food industry. 

    Saudi Arabia

    Food Consumption Estimated to Grow

    Saudi Arabia’s recent total food service sales was estimated at USD8.87 billion, accounting for nearly half of the GCC market. The GCC food services market, which recently stood at USD18.8 billion, is estimated to grow to a collective value of USD24.5 billion by 2018, according to industry research. The casual dining segment has emerged as the second fastest growing within the food sector market with potential for growth. Most of the major branded restaurants with multiple branches are concentrated in primary and secondary cities. Urbanized population, globally-exposed younger generation who are inspired by food, shopping festivals, exhibitions and events become stimulus to food industry. In combination with high disposable incomes and significant investments in new malls, restaurants and hotels, Saudi Arabia is particularly ripe for global investments in the food service sector notably in casual dining segment to cater to young population. Industry experts predict significant growth in both revenues and number of outlets in the sector. 


    UAE

    Dubai's First Culinary Month

    Dubai’s ultimate dining destination, Atlantis, The Palm, is set to host its biggest gastronomic event yet, with the resorts first ever Culinary Month. Throughout November, residents and visitors across the UAE will be able to rub shoulders with celebrity chefs, re-discover their favourite restaurants, sample new menus and attend a whole host of epic events during the month-long gastronomy filled affair. With an aim to celebrate global and regional culinary talent, Culinary Month will feature appearances from celebrity chef’s Nobu Matsuhisa, Gordon Ramsay and Giorgio Locatelli as well delivering a series of pop up events and special occasions. Additionally, throughout November, guests can take the opportunity to try specially priced set menus at any of Atlantis’ eight signature restaurants including Seafire Steakhouse, Ossiano and Nobu for USD95 and Seafire, YUAN, Ronda Locatelli, Ayamna, Nasimi and Bread Street Kitchen & Bar for only USD40.8.

    Yemen

    FAO-World Bank Scale Up Famine-Fighting

    The World Bank and FAO have launched a USD36 million project aimed at providing immediate assistance to over 630,000 poor and food-insecure people in Yemen - more than 30 percent of whom are women - as well as increasing longer term agricultural resilience in the conflict-ridden country. The grant funds for the three-year "Smallholder Agricultural Production Restoration and Enhancement Project (SAPREP)" come from the World Bank's Global Agriculture Food Security Program (GAFSP). With an estimated 17 million people facing Emergency or Crisis levels of acute food insecurity, Yemen is currently experiencing the worst humanitarian crisis in the world. The ongoing conflict has severely affected the agriculture sector and has had a devastating impact on the food security, nutrition and livelihood of Yemenis. The grant will enable FAO to support priority projects, such as those in the areas of providing food-security support and rehabilitation of water resources that will increase smallholders' production, income and nutrition, as well as build the capacity of stakeholders involved in various projects related to the grant.