Following a record 2017 edition that welcomed in excess of 97,000 visitors across one million square feet of exhibition space, Gulfood, the world’s largest annual food event. is placing innovation at the heart of its 23rd edition taking place on February 18 to 22, 2018.

As the global F&B community gears up for this principal opportunity to source the latest and best products at the best price, Gulfood is promising a wave of new innovations and services to reflect changes in consumer demand.

The fully booked-out event will welcome more than 5,000 exhibitors showcasing products across eight primary market sectors. The World Food category will feature 120 country pavilions carrying a raft of authentic, niche and natural products that cater to a consumer shift towards food that is traceable by origin and source. The latest World Food additions are Estonia, Serbia and Slovak Republic.

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Maintaining a tight focus on diversity, this year’s event will feature a Newcomers Exhibition Lounge showcasing trend-driven products that have never been available in the MENA region. This new trading opportunity will run parallel with an Innovation and New Products Zone spotlighting the most successful and relevant market entries that have never previously been launched in MENA. International newcomers Kerry, Juicy, Belmoca, Asian Blending, the German Meat Association and Promar are just some of the highlights.

In total, buyers can look forward to meeting more than 1,000 new-to-show food & beverage producers that have been hand-selected to deliver greater volumes of consumer-oriented products. These include health and wellness categories such as organic and sugar-free  plus third-wave coffee varieties and taste and texture innovations across the board.

Gulfood Innovation Awards finalists will also form an integral part of the Innovation Zone showcase, with 2018 Award winners being announced during the annual Gulfood Awards ceremony. Additional networking features include a series of government-accredited fringe seminars running throughout the exhibition plus live pitch demonstrations from some of the most exciting global startups on the scene.