The market for local produce has been growing four times faster in volume and five times faster in value than the overall industry, according to a survey released by the Abu Dhabi Farmers' Services Centre, ADFSC.
The ‘ADFSC Market Position Survey' gathered information from official government sources, including the Ministry of Environment and Water, Statistics Centre Abu Dhabi and the Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority, and was designed to establish the size and market share of local vegetable and livestock products in Abu Dhabi and Dubai Emirates.
"We undertook this survey to get a clearer understanding of the current health of the local market as well as the size of the overall fruit, vegetable and livestock industry here in the UAE" said Nasser Al Junaibi, Acting CEO, ADFSC.
"The survey will also help us understand current market trends and recognise areas where ADFSC can work with our members to cultivate future growth in the local industry." Face to face interviews were also conducted with ADFSC's 16 wholesale partners and 9 institutional partners such as Spinneys, Lulu, Carrefour and Geant to establish market share and data on the purchase volume and prices of local vegetable and livestock products.
"Sixteen percent of all fruits and vegetables are estimated to be sourced locally and the market is estimated to have a size of 1.05 million tonnes and is valued at Dh2.4 billion," said Ali Al Marzouqi, Planning and Development Director, ADFSC.
Whilst cucumbers, capsicum, herbs, leafy vegetables and tomatoes enjoyed a high local share for ADFSC's farmers, the survey revealed that vegetables such as onion, potato, cabbage and pumpkin are opportunities for future growth due to their high volume but low market share.
Information for the survey was also collected from import and export statistics, domestic production statistics and production data from other sources such as abattoirs and dairies.
"Just under 50 percent of all fresh local meat and livestock products are sourced locally by volume and 38 percent by value. The total value of the meat and livestock product market is estimated to be worth Dh3.7 billion," Al Marzouqi concluded.