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Belgian exporters aim for Dubai

At the start of December, VLAM went to Dubai with representatives from BelOrta and Coöperatie Hoogstraten. The ninth edition of the World of Perishables (WOP) took place there. A chef at VLAM’s promotional stand treated the visitors to ‘our’ snacks every day, which garnered quite a bit of positive attention. The chicory range and the soft fruits in particular drew large crowds.

The participation in this fair is part of the European project ‘Taste of Europe II,’ which grants subsidies to VLAM to promote our local products outside of European borders. In the autumn of 2018, VLAM will participate in WOP in Dubai again for that same programme.

WOP Dubai welcomed nearly 5,500 visitors in December, who were introduced to the products of 221 international exhibitors. The considerable participation of France Italy, Australia, and China in particular, were remarkable.



Belgian trade with United Arab Emirates
The Belgian export of fresh fruit and vegetables to the United Arab Emirates experienced a fluctuating trend. Both for fresh fruit and fresh vegetables there’s a net profit compared to the start of VLAM’s European campaign in 2013.

The export of fresh fruit increased from about a dozen tonnes in 2013 to 414 tonnes in the first 11 months of 2017. The most important export products are our apples and pears, which show a fluctuating but rising trend. Pears are doing particularly well compared to previous years.

The Belgian export of fresh vegetables, on the other hand, is having it a bit more difficult. The export (45 tonnes up to November 2017) is higher than before the start of the campaign in 2013, but it’s more difficult to find a permanent sales market in the UAE. The product range changes every year, with carrots, turnips, cabbages and tomatoes being the most important export products.


The United Arab Emirates are a growing import market. Many more southern countries and neighbouring countries are important suppliers of fresh fruit. For example, South Africa, Iran, Iraq, India, Philippines. In Europe, the UAE mostly buys fruit in Italy, Spain and France. It’s similar for fresh vegetables, and India, Iran, China and Jordan are the most important suppliers for these products. From Europe, fresh vegetables are mostly imported form Spain and the Netherlands. This includes an important share of re-export from Belgian products via the Netherlands.

Source: VLAM

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