December 4, 2023

ITA to present innovation and sustainability at 2023 Food Specialty Show, Dubai

Italy, renowned for its rich culinary heritage, is making headlines for a different kind of recipe – its commitment to sustainability. The Italian Trade Agency (ITA) is set to make a profound statement at the Food Specialty Food Festival in Dubai, spotlighting Italy’s journey towards becoming a greener and more sustainable nation.

Italian agri-food global exports reached a historic value of 60 billion euros in 2022, an increase of
17% yoy and 32 billion euros in the first semester of 2023. Also in the UAE, the demand for Italian
agri-food products signed a new record value of 419 million euros in December 2020, a growth of
40% on the previous year.

A wide sample of authentic Italian food products will be showcased next week at Speciality Food
Festival 2023 (Dubai World Trade Centre, 7-9 November) the trade fair dedicated to the fine food in
the Gulfood Manufacturing where Italy, once again, will represent the one of the largest foreign
participation with more than 300 exhibiting companies.

In value, the most exported Italian agri-food products both to the world and to the UAE specifically
are wines and beverages (8 bln euros), pasta and cereals (7 billion euros), fresh fruits and vegetables
(5.5 billion euros). A recent significant increase affected also extra virgin olive oil, cheeses and cured

Organic ingredients have also widely contributed to the growth of “Made in Italy” sales around the
world by reaching a record value of 3.4 billion euros in 2022: +16% compared to 2021 and 3.6
billion in 2023 (estimated), +203 % compared to 2012, an almost triple increase in value in a decade.
Italian cuisine is considered one of the best in the world thanks to its variety of tastes and healthy
dishes. The high-quality ingredients along with the high safety standards throughout the food and
production process contributes to its global success and reputation.

In 2023, organic food represented a substantial 5.5% of Italy’s total agricultural food
exports, demonstrating the nation’s commitment to sustainable and organic farming
practices. Italy is a leader in promoting and exporting organic products, and this is reflected
in the high share of organic exports in the agricultural food industry. This upward trajectory
not only reflects a strong global demand for Italian organic products but also underscores the country’s dedication to environmentally conscious farming practices. A delicious taste of such a culinary treasury will be offered at the Italian Food Lab where Michelin Star Chefs, as well as other Italian Chefs working in most prestigious Emirati restaurants, will prepare original recipes for the Emirati public with 100% authentic and genuine Italian ingredients.

The Italian Food Lab at Speciality Food Festival 2023 is organized by ITA-Italian Trade Agency
in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Lorenzo Fanara, Ambassador of Italy to the UAE, said: “The Speciality Food Festival of Dubai is an unparalleled opportunity for Italian businesses seeking expansion, as it provides a significant platform to promote bio-certified and sustainable agri-food products, in the global market and in the UAE. This event represents also a great chance to demonstrate Italy’s commitment to sustainability, which goes hand in hand with its culinary excellence, where tradition, quality, and eco-consciousness coexist. In fact, Italian cuisine is globally renowned for its delightful tastes and healthy dishes, attributed to the meticulous use of high-quality ingredients and stringent safety standards throughout the production process. This year’s Festival will also coincide with the VIII edition of the Week of Italian Cuisine of the UAE, which will celebrate the richness of Italian food with many initiatives all across the UAE.”

Amedeo Scarpa, ICE/ITA Dubai Director, added “Our successful role in promoting Italian agri-food
SME’s is testified by the double digit increase of our export towards this market, where customers
pay every day more and more attention about quality, safety, and authenticity of the products they
eat. With a new record of 230 million euros worth of Italian agri-food products exported to this
market in the first semester 2023 (+20% on the same period of 2022) and a forecast of 460 mln, that
could be absolutely a record, trade relationships between Italy and the UAE are becoming stronger
year after year. With the motto Sustainability is SustainabITALY, we are committed to boost Italian
bio certified and sustainable products as a concrete contribution to next COP28 which will be host in
the UAE next month”.

As the Food Specialty Show unfolds in Dubai, ITA invites attendees to witness firsthand how
Sustainability is indeed SustainabITALY, with Italy poised to showcase its culinary excellence
alongside a bold vision for a greener and more sustainable future.

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