Organisers of SIAL Middle East have confirmed that deals worth AED4.6billion (US$1.25bn) were recorded at the eighth edition of the three day exhibition, boosted by an increase in participants which attracted more than 26,000 visitors and experts from the food, beverage and hospitality industry.

Held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Presidential Affairs and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority (ADFCA), the exhibition concluded on 14 December by honouring the 600 exhibitors that took part in donating the UAE Red Crescent’s ‘Preservation of Grace’ initiative.

The exhibitors were awarded certificates of appreciation in recognition of their participation in the initiative which was launched by ADFCA in line with country’s the Year of Giving, and saw roughly 30 tonnes of food exhibited at SIAL Middle East donated to charity.

Thamer Rashid Al Qasemi, chairman of the organising committee for SIAL Middle East, said in a statement: “The introduction of the Red Crescent’s ‘Preservation of Grace’ programme was to help promote the ‘Year of Giving’ initiative both locally and internationally, as well as to introduce a culture of tolerance and giving.”

ADFCA has already begun its preparations for the ninth edition of SIAL Middle East to maximise return for exhibitors and to increase the number of visitors in line with the agenda of Abu Dhabi's activities.

Co-located with SIAL, the Abu Dhabi Date Palm Exhibition is set for a significant expansion in terms of space and number of exhibitors in 2018.

Al Qasemi added: “Expanding the Abu Dhabi Date Palm Exhibition stems from ADFCA's enthusiasm to develop the date palm sector in the country and to provide local producers with an opportunity to build new partnerships that promote the Emirati dates worldwide, enhancing the national economy and develop date palm industries.”

One of the highlights of SIAL Middle East was the victory of Emirati citizen Ibrahim Al Mallouhi who took home the top honours in the National Competition for Preparing Coffee. 

SIAL Middle East was supported by host sponsor: Abu Dhabi Chamber; diamond sponsor: Jenaan Investments; silver sponsors: Al Rawafed and Abu Dhabi Farmers’ Services Centre; bronze sponsor: Mai Dubai and The Deep Seafood Company; and halal certification sponsor: Emirates Authority for Standardization & Metrology;.

It will return from 10-12 December 2018.

Story continues below