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The growing millennial population is driving food trends and services in the UAE. Not only do they want healthy ingredients but they also look for price convenience. This younger generation is more open to trying new cuisines and prefers the convenience of online platforms for shopping and ordering food. Furthermore, the increase in the number of working and single women living in the UAE is driving the expansion of dining-out options and of food home delivery services through e-commerce platforms (Source: Canadian Government, 2021).

Consumers in the UAE have begun to include more fresh fruits and vegetables in their diet. The government's commitment to address the alarming rates of obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular diseases among the population and the recent pandemic, have changed the local consumption scenarios

“Fresh up your Life! – top quality European fruit and veg” is the project developed by CSO Italy and funded by the European Union, to promote the culture of fresh fruit and vegetables in the United Arab Emirates and and to raise awareness of what it means to produce and consume in a genuine. The following Italian companies also participate in the programme: Apofruit Italia, Cico-Mazzoni, Conserve Italia, Lagnasco Group, Oranfrizer, Origine, Unacoa.

European fruit and vegetables are synonymous with safety and wholesomeness, values guaranteed by strict production regulations; they are renowned and appreciated all over the world for their excellent quality, as well as for their unique flavour. Thanks to the incredibly varied climatic and environmental conditions, in the European Union it is possible to cultivate products of inimitable quality and taste. Italy, thanks to the many sunny days and a unique biodiversity, is the European biggest producer of fruit and vegetables together with Spain.

Kiwi – Italy is the second largest producer and exporter of kiwis in the world. The kiwi grown in the Mediterranean, especially in Italy, thanks to its superior quality and taste have been gaining the appreciation of consumers from all over the world since 1950s and are today among the first in the world. The most interesting aspect of the kiwi is represented by its nutritional components. Vitamin C is not simply the most abundant of vitamins, but represents the quantitatively most important substance of this fruit. Among the other nutrients of the kiwi there are vitamins K, E, folate and minerals such as potassium, phosphorus and calcium. From an energy point of view, kiwi contains about 60 calories per 100 grams, so in addition to the advantage of having a moderate glycaemic index, it also has a low-calorie content. At the moment, the Italian kiwi is in season!

Apples - Italy occupies the fifth place in the world for the production of apples with over 2 million tons produced per year. Apple is a concentrate of antioxidants, it is rich in fibre, useful for keeping cholesterol and blood sugar under control. The taste of the apple is defined by the balance between sugars, acids and mineral salts it contains. The degree of ripeness enhances the ideal conditions for consumption, also characterizing the consistency and juiciness of the fruit. The distinctive characteristics of the flavour of the different apple varieties are linked to the aromatic substances they release.

Pears - Italy is the first major producer of this fruit in Europe. Their harvest period runs from July to September and differs according to the variety. Pear is rich in nutrients and goes well with different ingredients, which is why it is perfect to use in the kitchen for various sweet and savoury recipes. Pear’s delicacy, freshness and lightness make it suitable for everyone, and an excellent fruit for children during their growth phase. Pear is highly digestible and can be consumed without problems by diabetics and pregnant women, thanks to its good sugars and high folic acid content.

Orange - It is the most widespread citrus fruit in the world and undoubtedly the most squeezed one, the breakfast star and an incredibly versatile ingredient in the kitchen. Italy has always played a fundamental role in the production of oranges, favoured by the mild climate, the landscape and the nature of the land, often very suitable for cultivation, due to the presence of the sea. Few calories (40 Kcal per 100 grams), for great goodness, these are the fundamental ingredients of the success of oranges. Orange is composed of 90% water, to which fructose and mineral salts are then added; it has many vitamins (C, B and P), citric acid and fibre. Blood oranges contain calcium, phosphorus, potassium, iron and selenium. Sicily is the homeland of blood orange, a juicy fruit with an intense flavour that grow during the whole winter season. Equipped with a double vitamin load compared to normal oranges, blood oranges remain among the tastiest and most sought after.

Orange juice - The colour of orange juice comes from anthocyanins, widely present in the peel of the fruit; the amount of red pigment in the fruit depends on where it was grown and when it was harvested. The juice product uses only the best fruit to produce 750ml of certified juice; each pack of juice consumes an average of 1.8 kg of PGI Sicilian blood oranges. This is why it is a true elixir for well-being!

Processed tomatoes and derivatives - The tomato is one of the many symbols of Italy, it contributed to making Italian cuisine famous and immortal all over the world. The influence of tomatoes on Italian cuisine is in fact indisputable: they bring versatility, intense and deep colours and enrich many dishes with flavour. No product has defined Italian cuisine more than the tomato! Today Italy is a leader in the production of tomato preserves and processed tomatoes and the tomato preserves sector is one of the excellences of the Italian food industry. It is one of the most important Italian chain of processed fruit and vegetables both in terms of turnover and in terms of quantities produced. The best known and most widely distributed tomato derivatives are pulp, peeled tomatoes, preserves, concentrates, chunks, as well as all sauces and gravies made up of at least 50% derivatives. In Italy important canning companies, leaders in their respective market sectors, process enormous quantities of product following processing methods and using technologies developed over time.

Source: SecNewgate