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Building blocks for UAE’s food security

21 February 2022, Djamal Djouhri, CEO, AGROP and AGF:

Bringing more land under farming has worked well for the UAE despite the climate challenges.

Building blocks for UAE’s food security
Wednesday 23 February 2022

21 February 2022, Djamal Djouhri, CEO, AGROP and AGF:

Bringing more land under farming has worked well for the UAE despite the climate challenges.

The COVID-19 continues to reinforce the fragility of global food security. Global supply chains have suffered, with the pandemic exposing considerable vulnerabilities towards maintaining a sustainable and reliable flow of essential food items.

Across the global food community, this has served to create a sense of urgency to identify new ways of doing this – and to transform how we produce our food. Even before the pandemic, governments were increasingly putting food security on their agendas, ramping up initiatives across the industry to create a more secure and sustainable food ecosystem.

In recent years, the issue of climate change - coupled with economic instability and evolving consumer behaviour – had already heavily impacted and influenced food production. With the added complication of the pandemic, governments are under increased pressure to rethink methods to meet their own food security objectives, and deliver on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Looking to the Middle East in particular, with its harsh environmental conditions, the issue remains a key priority for the regions’ leaders. The UAE already is taking concrete action to become a global leader in driving food security, aiming to lead the ranking in the Global Food Security Index by 2051.

In 2021, the UAE established the Emirates Food Security Council to meet the National Food Security Strategy goals and is investing in new and innovative agricultural technologies to increase local production and distribution and to produce food more efficiently. With an ever-growing population, these initiatives are fundamental for the country to be able to cater for rising consumption needs.

Now, the country looks to a new frontier for food, with a number of key drivers and trends set to shape the future of food in the region.

Rise of agritech

There has been a monumental shift in global food production, and the world is looking at innovative and new sustainable agricultural technology solutions to address food security challenges. The UAE has implemented a number of agritech initiatives, such as ‘controlled-environment agriculture’; aquaculture to reduce the consumption of fresh water and farm in controlled conditions for fish; vertical farming by stacking layers of plants and vegetables in an indoor environment to control conditions for all-year round production, and other initiatives such as robotics and drone solutions for crop planning, production and resourcing to increase yields.

Supporting local produce

Local production is an opportunity to decentralise our food systems, develop shorter supply chains and support local businesses and communities as consumers demand fresh, healthy, and locally farmed produce. There are huge benefits to producing food locally, including nutritional benefits, as well as reducing carbon footprint and waste, and supporting job creation to boost the local economy.

At Al Ghurair Investment, we are long-time advocates for local production. With an underlying commitment to enhancing life in the communities in which we operate, we seek to actively facilitate regional food supply, and to enrich product diversity. From our wheat and other milling operations, an animal feed plant, and one of the UAE’s largest poultry farms, we deliver sustainable business solutions and streamline supply chains to support the production of local, fresh food across the region.

At this year’s Gulfood exhibition, there was a notable uplift in the presence of ‘homegrown’ brands – a trend that looks set to stay.

Healthy alternative diets

With a young and growing population in the UAE, environmental health, wellness, and sustainability are at the forefront of consumer decision-making. The emergence towards flexitarian diets -which includes cutting food groups, reducing consumption of animal products and the rise of vegan and plant-based diets - have grown exponentially.

These emerging behaviours go beyond solely health benefits ; many consumers are also raising questions not only about animal welfare, but also about the the environmental impact on the planet as a whole. Supermarkets, brands, and restaurants are rapidly meeting this evolving market demand and are focusing on providing alternatives to meat and dairy products.

Strengthening resilience

As we enter a post-pandemic era, where consumers are demanding change from the food industry, food security remains at the top of policymakers’ agendas. There are clear signs of change in the regions’ dynamic agriculture sector, as the UAE leads the global charge for food security.

We must ensure we are all part of this ecosystem to address these challenges by strengthening our resilience, improving efficiencies in the supply chain, embracing new innovative trends, and supporting product diversity, to drive the food security agenda for all in the UAE and beyond.

This article appeared as an excusive in Gulf News, please read the article in its original location here.

Al Ghurair set to onboard prominent Spanish brands after successful ‘La Tienda’ run during Dubai Expo

08 April 2022, Dubai, UAE:

  • Managed by Al Ghurair’s retail arm, La Tienda, the commercial space of the Spanish Pavilion at the Dubai Expo, drew more than 580,000 visitors;
Al Ghurair set to onboard prominent Spanish brands after successful ‘La Tienda’ run during Dubai Expo
Friday 08 April 2022

08 April 2022, Dubai, UAE:

  • Managed by Al Ghurair’s retail arm, La Tienda, the commercial space of the Spanish Pavilion at the Dubai Expo, drew more than 580,000 visitors;
  • Announcement follows recent ‘Friends of Spain’ prestigious award in recognition of forging relationships between Spain and the UAE presented on behalf of the President of Spain to Al Ghurair.

Al Ghurair Retail, part of leading diversified UAE business Al Ghurair Investment, is set to onboard several prominent Spanish brands onto its portfolio, after successful management of La Tienda: Brands of Spain Shop, the commercial space of the Spain Pavilion at the recently concluded Expo 2020 Dubai.

The first-of-its-kind shop, which was a collaboration between Al Ghurair Retail and the Leading Brands of Spain Forum (FMRE), counted more than 580,000 visitors throughout its 6-month run. It featured more than 20 brands from Spain, across a variety of categories, including fashion, food and beverage, and accessories.

Commenting on the success of La Tienda, Arturo Lujan, CEO, Al Ghurair Ventures, which includes Al Ghurair Retail businesses, said: “Expo 2020 Dubai was a visionary showcase of synergy: bringing together countries, brands and organisations from across the globe, in an energetic and colourful celebration of cultural diversity.

Through this prestigious platform, we were able to support our representative brands with elevating profile and equity, as well as enhancing consumer choice in the regional retail sector. We are honoured and humbled to have had the opportunity to participate in this once-in-a-lifetime event through our Innovation and Sustainability commitments.

Participating brands at La Tienda were selected based on Sustainability, quality, innovation, and design, in alignment with Al Ghurair’s own core values to Enhance Life of our customers, employees and the communities that we serve. Its success has opened talks over Al Ghurair Retail potentially adding several Spanish brands to their diverse portfolio, cementing their footprint in the region.”

Fashion and jewellery brands were the top performers at La Tienda, taking up 53% of total sales, followed by gastronomy brands at 35%.

The conclusion of this triumphant stint at Expo 2020 follows the company’s recent ‘Friends of Spain’ prestigious award by Brands of Spain, in recognition of its contribution to forging economic, cultural, and business relationships between Spain and the UAE, which was presented on behalf of Spain’s President to Al Ghurair.

Arturo Lujan added: “We are committed to pursuing more impactful partnership opportunities that boost overall retail experience in the region, and support the UAE’s vision of sustainability and innovation, as well as its trade relations with international markets. We are proud to play a crucial economic and cultural link between the UAE and other countries. Spain is already a major supplier of fashion, beauty, and leather footwear to the UAE, and we are proud to amplify this bilateral relationship.

Now, we are working on building lasting relationships with several of the brands represented at La Tienda, and we hope to be able to share some exciting announcements about our extended retail portfolio soon!

The Expo 2020 Dubai closed its doors on March 31, reaching a milestone of over 20 million visits.

About Al Ghurair Investment:

Al Ghurair Investment aims to set the standard for family business groups in the Middle East. Al Ghurair is proud of its deep roots in the UAE, which trace back over six decades. Building on this enduring legacy, the Group has established diversified operations spanning more than 50 countries across the globe, employing approximately 28,000 people. Today, the Al Ghurair family name is synonymous with the development of the region and AGI builds on this long history of innovation and entrepreneurship through its operations in seven distinct sectors including food, resources, properties, construction, energy, mobility and ventures.

From its modest beginnings as a local trading business, the investment Group continues to be guided by its purpose: ‘Enhancing Life’. In order to fulfil this, AGI is dedicated to the adoption and implementation of best practices in all areas of its business, including investment and governance, in order to enable and drive future prosperity and benefits for the communities within which it operates.

For media enquiries, please contact:

Sara O’Hara
Head of Group Communications & Group Press Office
Al Ghurair Investment
Email: media@al-ghurair.com

Al Ghurair Foods to participate in Gulfood 2022

14 February 2022, Dubai, United Arab Emirates:

Al Ghurair Foods, which is part of Al Ghurair Investment, the leading diversified UAE family business is set to participate at Gulfood 2022, the world’s largest annual food and beverage (F&B) event.

Al Ghurair Foods to participate in Gulfood 2022
Tuesday 15 February 2022

14 February 2022, Dubai, United Arab Emirates:

Al Ghurair Foods, which is part of Al Ghurair Investment, the leading diversified UAE family business is set to participate at Gulfood 2022, the world’s largest annual food and beverage (F&B) event.

Taking place at the Dubai World Trade Centre from 13-17 February 2022, the event will host leading experts, decision makers and leaders from the F&B industry who will share valuable insights on new industry trends and innovations, as well as creating meaningful dialogue and discussing ground-breaking solutions.

Commenting on the Gulfood event, Djamal Djouhri, CEO of Al Ghurair Resources Oils & Proteins and Al Ghurair Foods LLC, said: “We are proud to participate in the largest food and beverage exhibition in the world. As we remain committed to investing in projects that contribute to our communities and a better quality of life, we look forward to facilitating these discussions about the F&B sector and advancing the future food agenda across the region.”

“We are eager to attend this key event and explore new partnerships with organisations, ministers and policymakers. Gulfood 2022 is an ideal platform to share breakthrough ideas and address industry challenges with leaders amongst the global food community and we look forward to these fruitful discussions over the next five days.”

Al Ghurair Foods is world-leading manufacturer and supplier of high-quality food products with over 45 years of expertise in the food industry, a presence in 25 countries and four continents. Al Ghurair Foods and Resources designs and delivers sustainable business solutions by innovating consistently, streamlining supply chains, saving energy, reducing costs and collaborating strategically with customers. Its portfolio covers a broad range of branded, private label and bulk products, catering to diverse businesses and retailers.

The Al Ghurair Foods stand will be located at C8-10 in Hall 6 of the Dubai World Trade Centre.

AG PCS Switchgear secures prestigious Dubai Quality Appreciation Award

24 March 2022, Dubai, United Arab Emirates:

  • The award recognises AG PCS Switchgear’s commitment to innovation and excellence
AG PCS Switchgear secures prestigious Dubai Quality Appreciation Award
Friday 25 March 2022

24 March 2022, Dubai, United Arab Emirates:

  • The award recognises AG PCS Switchgear’s commitment to innovation and excellence

AG PCS Switchgear, part of Al Ghurair Investment, one of the leading diversified UAE family businesses, has won the Dubai Quality Appreciation Award (DQAA) under the Manufacturing sector, at the 28th Business Excellence Awards by the Dubai Department of Economy and Tourism (DET).

Held annually, the ceremony recognises businesses who demonstrate a resolute commitment in the pursuit of business excellence in their respective fields, contributing to the evolving business landscape in the UAE and across the region. This accolade awards companies who are able to develop robust organisational capabilities, embrace innovation and sustain outstanding results.

The Business Excellence Awards are held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

Speaking about the award, Jacob John, CEO of AG PCS Switchgear, said: “Excellence has always been a part of the DNA of Dubai. For decades, AG PCS Switchgear has committed to developing innovative solutions for our quality-conscious customers across the utilities and industrial sectors. Service Excellence is at the core of our business model – and so we are delighted to receive this noble recognition of our enduring commitment towards leading with vision, inspiration and integrity, in line with our purpose. We thank His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum for his visionary leadership that recognises the hard work of companies, in pursuit of a stronger industrial ecosystem.”

Established in 1983, AG PCS Switchgear specialises in the design, engineering, and assembly of low voltage switchgear, serving markets across the Middle East. With an 81,000 ft² manufacturing facility in the UAE, the company has extensive engineering capabilities to design complex control systems, operating within the highest international standards of occupational health and safety.

Jacob John added: “The rapid evolution of the energy and electrical industries is having a significant impact on the switchgear market, and the types of products and technology we use. At AG PCS Switchgear we are embracing the opportunities arising from these changes, building on our long history of innovation to develop solutions that align to shifting demands. I am very proud of the AG PCS Switchgear team for continuously upholding our commitment to the highest standard of work!”

About Al Ghurair Investment 

Al Ghurair Investment aims to set the standard for family business groups in the Middle East. AGI is proud of its deep roots in the UAE, which trace back over six decades. Building on this enduring legacy, the Group has established diversified operations spanning more than 50 countries across the globe, employing approximately 28,000 people. Today, the Al Ghurair family name is synonymous with the development of the region and AGI builds on this long history of innovation and entrepreneurship through its operations in seven distinct sectors including food, resources, properties, construction, energy, mobility and ventures.

From its modest beginnings as a local trading business, the investment Group continues to be guided by its purpose: ‘Enhancing Life’. In order to fulfil this, AGI is dedicated to the adoption and implementation of best practices in all areas of its business, including investment and governance, in order to enable and drive future prosperity and benefits for the communities within which it operates.

For media enquiries, please contact:

Sara O’Hara
Group Communications & Press Office, Al Ghurair Investment
Email: sara.ohara@al-ghurair.com
Phone: +(971) 50 9299 540