Technology in F&B is food for thought
With new technologies and big data and analytics increasingly redefining industries across the globe, Gulfood 2018 will provide a platform for over 5,000 leading food industry players to benchmark just how innovation and food service technologies such as e-commerce and delivery apps are the real game-changers in the sector.
According to the International Data Corporation, worldwide revenues from big data and analytics will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 11.7 per cent to surpass $203 billion a year by 2020 as businesses search for ways to tap into exactly what consumers want.
The Gulfood Global Industry Outlook Report 2018, an independent report by Euromonitor International and commissioned by show organisers Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) ahead of this year's show, states that with a rapidly-growing, highly-urbanised younger population driving demand for packaged food and beverages, with global food and beverage sales set to top $1.8 trillion annually by 2021, "Internet purchasing is changing the delivery of products not just for storage and home-delivery formats but also in terms of access to local brands and short order supply".
The report adds: "Scaling up to meet this demand by leveraging technology, both blockchain and consumer-facing technology, is crucial. Investing in the supply chain and delivery logistics is essential to meeting not just the critical demands of the young, thoughtful consumer, but as a pathway to meeting future demand for personalised, tailored products of the consumer of 2030."
Internet retail and e-commerce is fastest-growing retail channel across the global food sector, according to the report. The Mena region is witnessing the biggest rise and is set to grow at a CAGR of 39 per cent through 2021. Home delivery and takeaway is the fastest food service channel in North America, Latin America, the Mena and Sub-Saharan Africa, growing fastest in Sub-Saharan Africa at a CAGR of 8.9 per cent. Annual growth for the next three years in the Mena is forecast at 5.1 per cent.
And Gulfood, which runs from February 18-22 at the DWTC, gives critical players in the food supply chain, regionally and globally, a tailored opportunity to highlight how they are embracing technology to service the changing face of the industry.
"The UAE, under the visionary approach of its leaders is at the forefront of innovation across business and society and Gulfood aligns impeccably with that. As the world's largest food and beverage trade show, Gulfood gives more than 5,000 exhibitors a unique opportunity to showcase their latest products and services, many of which will have been inspired or created by the positive impact technology is having on the world," said Trixie LohMirmand, senior vice-president for exhibitions and events at the DWTC.
"The sectorised layout of the show offers buyers unrivalled access to their target exhibitors, and more facetime with those showcasing the latest technology-driven solutions they require. Furthermore, the Gulfood Innovation Awards highlight and reward those at the cutting edge of the industry."
Sudhakar Gupta, director of international business development at Iffco, said: "The UAE is making great strides implementing big data and blockchain into the system, but for us as a company, we firmly believe that innovation only works from the consumer, backwards. If you are not listening to your customers you are not innovating."
"We adapt that data collection into our products to ensure our finished product item is delivered to meet demand for quality, wellness and price point."