Gulfood: Manufacturers and Exporters from India target Middle East and African Market

By Sagrika Sanjay

Gulfood, over the years, has become one of the most sought after exhibitions for Indian food processing and packaging companies. This year is no different; more than 100 companies will take part in Gulfood Manufacturing 2017 in Dubai from 31 Oct until 2 Nov. Indian companies are vying for a slice of the global market to spread their footprint in different countries which is good news for export revenue generation. Indian companies, of all strengths and sizes, are participating with and without government support from the length and breath of the country.

gulfoodIndia’s engineering exports in 2016-17 increased by 11.3 percent to $ 65.2 billion against $ 58.8 billion in the previous fiscal year. The dairy and food processing machinery along with textiles is worth $ 4.653 billion. These figures are as per DGCI&S, Government of India. The focus markets for Indian companies in this exhibition are Middle East, Africa and South America, as said by Amol Maind, Sr. Manager PTE Divison from Goma Engineering Company. Goma specialises in beverage technologies. They are, mostly, selling dairy and beverage machines though they have ice cream machines as well.

It is interesting to note that despite a large contingent of European companies participating, Indian companies are competing with them to sell their products in developed markets like the Middle East. It is evident in that case that the Indian companies are producing quality products to meet international demands. “We set-up Goma Middle East last year in Jebel Ali Free Zone”, Amol says. Further he added, “Goma is backed by technocrats. Technology runs through the company right from the top management. Our products are of high quality at par with products from developed countries”.

The African markets have always been a key export destination for Indian companies across products. These markets are still developing and purchasing power is far below than say Middle East Markets. How are Indian companies selling in both these markets is the question that comes to our mind. According to Rajesh Pamnani, Director R&D Engineering, “we sell automated and high capacity machines in the Middle East markets. At the same time semi-automatic and low capacity machines are sold in African markets”. Looks like a fantastic idea but there are internal challenges that companies go through in order to develop products for diverse markets. R&D Engineering deals in machines for ice cream, biscuits and confectionary.

Some of these companies have been participating at Gulfood for more than five years. They generate as much as 25 to 40 percent from exports. As the export figures suggest they are growing year-on-year. The Engineering Export Promotion Council does assist companies in subsidising their cost of participations.

The Indian companies who will be participating offer packaging and processing for dairy, bakery and ice cream amongst others in the event. We can confidently say that food processing machinery companies are following the Hon’ble Prime Minister’s slogan ‘Make in India and sell globally’.

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Food Marketing & Technology is a monthly magazine published by L.B. Associates Pvt Ltd

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