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Gulfood 2021 to reunite bold food & beverage leaders to explore dynamic food trade

Gulfood 2021

DUBAI, UAE – Gulfood 2021, the most competitive global sourcing platform and the first live, in-person food & beverage (F&B) sector event in almost 12 months, will reunite the global industry for five days of dialogue, live demonstrations and business deals at Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) from 21 – 25 February.

The return of Gulfood has grabbed the attention of the global F&B professionals as an unmissable opportunity to reconnect following the lack of face-to-face business opportunities in 2020. With a 34-year history of catalysing trade deals and sparking industry innovation, Gulfood 2021 will run across 20 exhibition halls under DWTC’s stringent health and safety protocols.

As the international food sector navigates evolving consumer behaviours in a multitude of global markets, Gulfood participants will discover an event gripped by product innovation and technology across a range of energetic and engaging on-show experiences.

Amongst the industry innovations on display, the 26th edition of Gulfood will host the show’s first blockchain-based dairy exhibitor courtesy of French technology innovator Ingredia, while Amul, the world’s eighth largest dairy company is in Dubai after recently making sector history by launching 33 products in one quarter.

To quench the industry’s appetite for industry leading content, the Gulfood Innovation Summit returns from 22 – 24 February uniting the world’s most influential chefs, food scientists, government officials and industry leaders. The three-day Summit will see marquee delegates at the forefront of industry innovation discuss and shape the future of food and gastronomy across topics including Governments’ role in shaping the future of food; Adapting to healthier, sustainable lifestyles; F&B Marketing, Tourism and Retail; and Leveraging emerging and future food technologies.

“As the most competitive global sourcing platform and the first live F&B event for almost 12 months, the return of Gulfood marks the only platform for F&B professionals to reconnect with partners, explore big business opportunities and start the year with confidence,” said Trixie LohMirmand, Executive Vice President, Events Management, DWTC.

“The show’s popular interactive features have been adapted for the times and are complemented by a series of new experiences and knowledge-exchange platforms which underline Gulfood’s capacity to the global agenda for a transformative industry responding to evolving market needs and post-pandemic market realignment.”

Stars on-stage: Heather Mills, James Knight-Pacheco & MasterChef Tarek Ibrahim

Gulfood 2021 visitors will get the chance to meet and be inspired by culinary stars, as leading chefs, authors and F&B decision-makers reveal their experiences, projects, and creativity at the show’s ‘Chef Talks Stage’ in Hall 8 from 21-24 February. This year’s line-up includes UK media personality Heather Mills, founder of the plant-based ethical vegan food company VBites, who takes to the Chef Talks Stage at 13.00pm on 21 February.

“My aim to make people more aware of food security and plant-based alternative products that can boost immune systems and put less pressure on our digestive systems,” said Mills.

Meanwhile, James Knight-Pacheco, host of the ‘Chef JKP Podcast’, Executive Chef at ME Dubai in Zaha Hadid’s iconic Opus; and Chef Tarek Ibrahim, the first Arab MasterChef and the culinary genius behind the hit Fatafeat TV show ‘Travelling Tarek’s Australian Adventures’ will host sessions on 21 and 23 February.

Elsewhere on the Chef Talks agenda, Italy’s 3-star Michelin Star chef Norbert Niederkofler will deliver a thought-provoking session titled ‘Fine Cuisine with Ingredients from the Wilderness’, while Gal Ben-Moshe, the third Israeli chef to be awarded a Michelin Star, will explore ‘Chefs Without Borders and Beyond Recipes’.

Another key highlight on day two of Chef Talks is the ‘Launching of the Gulfood Chef’s Club’ – a new global F&B industry first where 30 top UAE chefs will collectively create a bespoke menu live at Gulfood. Meanwhile, Gulfood visitors will be transported to some of Dubai’s best eateries with pop-up restaurants from Zuma, Boca and Roberto’s appearing over the show’s five days.

Insights and First in Food Workshops

Insights into the future of F&B will emerge at Gulfood’s First in FoodWorkshops learning sessions on 21, 23 and 24February in Hall 2. Hosted by leading experts and success-makers, this year’s programme features live sessions on topics ranging from food safety and innovation to sustainable dining, food safety and F&B design.

Greg Ohannessian, founding partner of Soma Mater, a consultancy firm focusing on building sustainability in the GCC’s food, water and energy nexus, will deliver a 60-minute session on sustainable dining alongside Roha Daud, a food & wellness brand consultant and the founder of Cause’ Kitchn.

“In the face of a global pandemic, regional leaders have taken swift and decisive actions that allow society, and the food industry in particular, to look toward 2021 with a strong sense of optimism. Gulfood 2021 represents the perfect opportunity for leaders across government and food sectors to gather and discuss how to embrace the challenges we face together and to join hands in embarking on a new path towards sustainable growth, more resilient food systems, and to greater cooperation for our environment, our health, and our happiness,” said Ohannessian.

The programme will also include workshops devoted to Kosher Certification, taking professionals through the varying levels of certification for the food production and service sectors, and processes and opportunities in the international Kosher industry with Rabbi Joel Weinberger, Head of India, South Asia Operation at the US-based Star-K Kosher certification agency.

Masterclasses with celebrities

Some 31 renowned culinary creators, including five Michelin Star chefs from Germany, Italy and Portugal will take part in activations including, masterclasses, acrobatic pizza, pastry art, and the secrets of the flour kitchen at Gulfood’s popular ‘Tastes of the World’, which will take place in Hall 8 across five-days.

Taking part in the ‘Creative Cuisines’ experience, an interactive platform designed for Michelin starred chefs to explain their cuisine philosophy through a signature dish, the star-studded quintet include: Norbet Niederkofler (3 Michelin Stars), whose restaurant St Hurbertus sits at the base of Italy’s Dolomites and is famed for only using ingredients produced in the Italian mountain range; Marco Sacco, the man behind Piccolo Lago – the awarding-winning restaurant perched over Italy’s Lake Mergazzo; Germany’s René Frank, head chef and co-owner of Berlin’s CODA, the world’s first dessert restaurant to receive 2 Michelin Stars; Portugal’s Rui Silvestre and Israel’s Gal Ben-Moshe, whose Berlin restaurant Prism was awarded a Michelin Star in 2020.

The group will be joined by many other titans of the global culinary landscape exploring a series of ground-breaking topics and experiences. Highlight sessions include the ultimate commercial kitchen technology; the best plant-based meat fish and dairy free alternatives; a 3D printed plant-based meat -a new vision for a sustainable F&B industry from Israel; zero waste sustainable fine dining and a signature dish from one of the Dubai’s top chefs.

Top chefs taking to the live kitchen stage this year, cooking up a storm with creative ingredients and the most advanced kitchen and tools on the market include Luciano Marques, Head Chef, Tasca by Jose Avillez Dubai Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group; Bernerdo Paladini Executive Chef, Torno Subito; Chef Vanessa Bayma Chef Vanessa Bayma, Chef Bayma Consultancy; Alessandro Lunardi, Agugiaro & Fign; and many more.

Gulfood Innovation Awards

The 250 global entries received from 44 countries for this year’s Gulfood Innovation Awards testify to the pace of innovation currently underway in the industry. The annual awards celebrate and reward excellence across brands and products, with judging conducted by a panel of prestigious industry leaders. The winners of this year’s 10 competing categories will be awarded during the show, and will feature on the show’s website once announced.

International Culinary League

Innovation in preparation, incredible flavour and ingredient fusions, and a desire to be the best will take centre stage at the Gulfood International Culinary League, as four global teams led by elite chefs whip up gastronomical marvels. Team Asia will be headed by Zuma’s Pawel Kazawnosky, with Europe’s charge marshalled by Bernardo Palladini of Torno Subito by Bottura. America will compete with renowned chef James Knight-Pacheco at the helm, while Middle East and Africa’s hopes will be guided by Captain Mohamad Chabchoul.

UAE National Brewers Cup Championship

Gulfood will host the UAE National Brewers Cup Championship, an annual contest to discover the champion of hand brewing filter coffee that promotes manual coffee brewing and service excellence. Over two rounds, competitors will prepare and serve three individual beverages to an elite judging panel. The competition’s rules and regulations are based on the World Coffee Events judging criteria. The Championship will take place from 21 – 24 February in Za’abeel Hall 6.

Business and Safety

Gulfood 2021 will be held under stringent safety and hygiene protocols. DWTC has proved its capability to curate the safest face-to-face business environment and deliver world-class events with the highest safety protocols, as evidenced by the recent GITEX Technology Week – the only live in-person tech event in 2020. Held in December, the event welcomed tens of thousands of visitors with 96% of local and international attendees recording a ‘safe’ or ‘very safe’ experience.

With product sampling and handling such a vital interaction at a global F&B event, DWTC’s proven protocols have been further intensified for Gulfood 2021, under strict guidance and coordination with Dubai Health Authority (DHA) and Dubai Municipality, to ensure the safest possible business conditions. Wearing of masks is mandatory, with social distancing in place to ensure the wellbeing of all delegates. On-site registration will not be available; registration must be completed in advance via www.gulfood.com

Furthermore, the show is co-located with GulfHost, the ultimate trading platform for the hospitality equipment & foodservice Industry. For more information, please visit https://www.gulfhost.ae/

More information on the event safety guidelines can be found here https://www.gulfood.com/useful-info/safety-guidelines