Welsh food and drink companies are preparing to attend one of the world’s largest food trade events in Dubai, United Arab Emirates from 17-21 February. Held at the Dubai World Trade Centre, Gulfood will attract over 98,000 visitors over the five days, welcoming more than 5,000 exhibitors from 193 countries showcasing products across 8 primary market sectors.
Supported by the Welsh Government, 14 Welsh companies from across the food and drink sector in Wales will be present under the Cymru/Wales banner all looking to promote their products and increase their export markets.
The Welsh companies exhibiting include Llaeth y Llan/Village Dairy, Rachel’s, Dairy Partners Ltd, Daioni Organic, Fayrefield Foods Ltd, Calon Wen Organic Dairy, The Lobster Pot, Ty Nant Spring Water, Euro Foods Group UK, Prima Foods UK Ltd. Alongside these, representatives from Castle Dairies Ltd, Hybu Cig Cymru/Meat Promotions Wales, Dunbia and Village Bakery Ltd will also form part of the Export Visit.
Lesley Griffiths, Minister for Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs, believes that it is vital for the industry to take advantage of such opportunities to continue to develop global markets,
“Our food and drink sector is one we can rightly be proud of and we need to ensure that everybody knows about it. It is important that we maintain our visibility and showcase our innovative products at key global trade events.
“We are committed to supporting Welsh businesses having a presence at events such as Gulfood, as it is crucial in giving ourselves a strong platform to sell Welsh produce around the world. With Brexit approaching it is more important than ever that we champion Welsh produce and support food and drink businesses in every way we can. We need to help them build relationships with businesses in their sector so they can learn about new technologies, explore foreign markets and be competitive in their industry.”
North Wales yogurt manufacturer Llaeth Y Llan (Village Dairy) was busy in 2018 and released four new flavours to complement their already extensive range. They even treated their customers at Christmas by releasing a limited-edition Christmas Pudding flavour, a luxury treat for the festive period. Now in 2019 following the success of their first ever limited-edition luxury line, Llaeth Y Llan have made it their New Year’s resolution to continue to innovate and keep bringing out new flavours which will be music to the ears of their faithful fan base.
In January Llaeth Y Llan launched a new flavour ‘Cherry Bakewell’ to complement the core range of products. The limited-edition luxury flavour has its own design inspired by traditional Welsh Tapestry designs as well as a colour scheme to represent the flavour.
2019 promises to be a big year for Llaeth Y Llan with expansion on the horizon to fulfil demands of their growing brand and new contracts which they have secured.
“This growth is really beneficial to our company, as it’s allowing us to constantly improve as a manufacturer of high-quality Welsh yogurt. Not only are we using our skills and experiences to develop new flavours for our customers but we’re also looking at improving our current range,” explained company director Gruff Roberts.
With packaging and sugar levels such hot topics, the company is also looking to reduce sugar in their products as well as making their packaging as recyclable as possible.
Another company looking to make an impact and will be introducing their Afternoon Tea range at Gulfood is Prima Foods. Their classic British gluten-free afternoon tea range features both mixes and ready to bake goods, to include Scones, Choux Pastry and Belgian Chocolate Brownies.
Massimo Bishop-Scott, Head of Innovation at Prima Foods said,
“Afternoon teas have seen a bit of a resurgence and are an incredibly popular menu offering. They attract consumers outside the normal lunchtime/dinner eating occasions which provides incremental revenue for restaurants and hotels.
“We spotted that there was a gap for great tasting gluten free offerings on the afternoon tea menu and set about making products that tasted just as good as the gluten containing equivalent. A number of our customers in the UK have been so impressed with the taste and texture of our products that they have replaced their existing gluten containing range with our Chefs Promise range.”
One company looking to build on its existing links with the UAE is leading organic milk producer Daioni Organic. In June 2018 they began working with Truebell, their exclusive distributor to the UAE and have launched into Carrefour and Choithrams with other retailers to follow throughout 2019.
In 2018 Daioni launched a new iced coffee latte which they will be presenting at Gulfood for the first time this year.
Chief Operations Officer at Daioni Organic, Daniel Jones said,
“We have seen high growth in the overseas markets in the past couple of years, particularly from the Middle East and Asia. We see this expansion as well as our presence at Gulfood, as a great opportunity to enter growing markets and to invest in our existing relationships.”
Gulfood, now it its 24th year and over four days will feature international brands showcasing their latest food and drink products and services. Visitors will be able to meet with suppliers, sample new foods and learn about the latest culinary trends. The Gulfood Conference will also feature a line-up of industry leaders giving talks on everything from public health to the latest food manufacturing technology.
Visit the Cymru/Wales stands in the Dairy Hall B-2-3; International Hall S-N22 & Meat Hall B3-2 at Gulfood 2019.