Pet food supplier companies were among the more than 1,600 exhibitors at Gulfood Manufacturing 2019, the largest food and beverage processing and packaging show in the Middle East, Asia and Africa, held at the Dubai World Trade Center, October 29-31, 2019. Exhibitors from more than 60 countries participated in the expo with a focus on ingredients, processing and packaging, and supply chain solutions.

The event coincided with the inauguration of Private Label and Licensing Middle East, the region’s only dedicated trade platform for private label and licensing focused on consumer packaged goods, including pet food. The event was sponsored by Wilmar International Ltd., an agribusiness conglomerate; IFFCO UAE, a multi-food group; and Tetra Pak, one of the world’s largest processing and packaging companies.

Pet food companies at Gulfood Manufacturing 2019

Twenty-one companies relating to pet food operations set up exhibitions: six from Italy, five from France, four from UAE and one each from China, Germany, Netherlands, Spain, the UK and US. For example, representatives from American Extrusion International (processing), Hydrolock (sterilization services), ICA S.p.A (packaging), Payper (packaging), Quality Tools S.r.l. (packaging), Selo (processing) and Tetra Pak Export FZE (processing and packaging) were present at the event.

UK-based food processing company DC Norris and Company Ltd. won the Most Innovative Processing Solutions Award for the Jet Process System–Generation 4, part of DC Norris’ high-speed cooking and mixing production line. Its patented Jet Cook system heats and emulsifies wet pet food before it is sheared for final texturing. The system has a small footprint and does not require regular maintenance and annual pressure checks unlike traditional equipment. It can produce up to 18,000 kgs of wet pet food per hour, according to the company’s website.

Foodtech Summit celebrates innovation

One of the expo’s feature events, Foodtech Summit, saw food and beverage industry heavyweights calling for greater innovation and investment through startups and early adopters of new technologies as the wave of the future. Emphasis was placed on sustainability in the food production sector, particularly for local and environmental issues, population growth and food security, industrial and societal health benefits and animal welfare.

Lars Holmquist of Tetra Pak provided ambitious targets to achieve 90% recyclable packaging materials and 90% packaging with unique digital identification by 2030, which will impact all food sectors, including pet food.