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Quick Stats

Quick Stats

Organics Dashboard From Passport

  • Organic packaged food and beverages in the United Arab Emirates is led by Lactalis Groupe, with a value share of 17.9% in 2021, followed by Hipp GmbH & Co Vertrieb KG with a value share of 6.8% and Organic Foods & Café with a share of 4.4%.
  • The country ranks in the top 30 globally in terms of forecast growth, with a value CAGR of 4.3% for the period 2021-2026.

 

  • Organic products in the United Arab Emirates registered a market value of US$32.6 mn, representing about 0.05% of global demand, with a per capita expenditure of US$3.49 in 2021.
  • As the market for organic beverages evolves, and consumers become increasingly health-conscious, demand for organic products is expected to continue to increase, leading to a value of US$38.9 mn by 2025.
Qualitative Analysis

Qualitative Analysis

Quick Facts
  • Organic packaged food and beverages in the United Arab Emirates recorded an increase of 5.8% in 2021, registering a market size of US$32.6 mn.
  • Growth in organic packaged food was fuelled by organic dairy, which accounts for over a third of the market and recorded a 7.7% expansion in 2021.
  • Organic beverages remain a niche category in the United Arab Emirates, with limited potential for notable growth over the forecast period.
Market Trends
  • While higher unit prices and the fact that organic packaged food is rarely viewed as essential have historically confined demand for these products to affluent consumers, the marked shift towards at-home consumption as a result of Covid-19 supported strong sales growth throughout 2020 and 2021. Many consumers who would ordinarily dine out regularly remain reluctant to socialize in busy public spaces, instead attempting to recreate the on-trade experience at home by preparing their own meals from scratch using fresh ingredients such as organic sauces, dressings, and condiments.
  • With the adult obesity rate hitting an all-time high of 39.7% in 2021 and concerns around the Covid-19 pandemic persisting, health and wellness products are coming into greater focus in the United Arab Emirates. Consumers remain particularly keen to bolster their immune systems, supporting growth of naturally healthy and fortified/functional packaged food. These categories cater to the emerging clean eating trend by playing an important role in reducing intake of artificial ingredients and increasing consumption of key nutrients such as vitamin C. Health and wellness packaged food and beverages continue to benefit from concerns around how high sugar intake can impact general wellbeing, with the government running education campaigns and introducing regulation imposing taxes and packaging guidelines on sugary beverages.
Competitive Landscape
  • Organic packaged food in the United Arab Emirates is led by Rachel’s Organic Co Ltd, with a value share of 17.9% in 2021. The company accounted for nearly half of the organic dairy market in 2021, owing to its dominant position in yoghurts. It also benefits from a long-standing presence in the United Arab Emirates and strong demand among expatriates familiar with the brand name.
  • Baby food specialist HiPP ranked second with 6.8% of organic packaged food sales in 2021, followed by Organic Larder with 4.4% market share. However, it is Danish multinational Arla that continues to grow fastest, with the company’s share in organic packaged food doubling to 3.0% from 2019-21 as demand for its organic milk range launched in 2017 continues to grow. Arla’s organic milk offering is lower in price than rival organic offerings while slightly higher than conventional milk, and comes in a range of flavors including strawberry and chocolate. 
  • Considering the insignificant size of organic beverages in the United Arab Emirates, the value shares of major players and the competitive landscape is still unidentified. Höllinger, Sun Blast, and Whole Earth were among the players with presence in organic beverages in 2021, with products from these brands stocked at Carrefour. Within the hot drinks space, Coffee Planet Roastery had presence in organic fresh coffee.
Prospects And Growth Opportunity
  • Against the backdrop of an improving economic climate, organic packaged food is forecast to exhibit robust 4.2% CAGR over the period 2022-25 as consumers increasingly look for healthier options in general. One of the benefits that organic packaged food has is that it is already a well-established category, with many consumers perceiving that the higher prices charged for organic products are justified. Sales of organic beverages are expected to remain negligible during the forecast period as limited distribution prevents notable gains in consumer awareness for these products.
  • Organic baby food remains one of the most important categories under the umbrella of organic packaged food, with parents generally very keen on ensuring optimum nutrition for their babies and young children and organic products typically viewed as a good option due to the reduced likelihood of containing harmful chemicals and residues. 2020 saw Arla launch a new line of organic baby food targeting affluent consumers who have a strong understanding on the benefits of organic ingredients for babies during the earliest stages of their lives. This product range is also highly fortified, containing vitamin D, calcium, and iodine.
  • Private label has gained a stronger foothold in organic packaged food over recent years and is forecast to maintain sales momentum moving forward. The growth of private label organic packaged food can be attributed mainly to the success of the Carrefour Bio range, which has appealed to consumers through a combination of high-quality and affordable prices. Other private label advantages include vast economies of scale, access to very strong logistics chains, and preferential shelf placement in stores.
General Health And Wellness Trends
  • Sales of health and wellness packaged food and beverages are expected to gain momentum over the forecast period, having proven resilient to the economic challenges presented by the Covid-19 pandemic. The newfound focus on health and wellness and increasing consumer awareness of the importance of maintaining a healthy diet for immunity and general wellbeing are among the key drivers contributing to the positive evolution of health and wellness categories.
  • Increased consumer focus on specific aspects of health and wellness and products that respond to targeted needs will present opportunity for further segmentation and innovation. The free from category is set for near double-digit CAGR growth 2021-26, with free from gluten and free from lactose expected to become more popular as digestive health and dietary intolerances come into greater focus throughout society. Naturally healthy products including olive oil and honey are also expected to benefit from the clean eating trend as consumers strive to eliminate inherently harmful products from their diets, particularly those that contain high levels of sugar and/or artificial ingredients. Manufacturers will also look to tap into greater demand for products that combine a mix of health and wellness attributes, such as free from products that are also fortified/functional or naturally healthy products that are also free from and/or organic.
General Economics And Demographic Landscape

Economy: 

  • The economy of the United Arab Emirates is set to continue picking up steam in 2022, with real GDP growth expected to accelerate to 4.0% following a rebound of 2.4% in 2021. 
  • Private final consumption witnessed an increase of 2.9% in 2021, with a growth of 4.3% expected in 2022. 
  • The consumer price index was relatively flat at 0.2% in 2021 and is expected to average 1.5% in 2022.

 

Population demographics: 

  • The population of the United Arab Emirates held steady at 9.3 million in 2021 but is expected to rise to 9.7 million by 2025.
  • The gain in population is mainly driven by foreign citizens, which make up nearly 90.0% of the population. However, almost all immigrants are young or middle-aged adults, ensuring a relatively high median age. 
  • The median age in 2021 was recorded at an all-time high 33.2 years, significantly higher than the regional average. This is further expected to increase to 34.6 years by 2030. 

 

Income & expenditure: 

  • The savings ratio in the United Arab Emirates was stable at 15.2% of disposable income in 2021 and is forecast to remain at this level through 2023.
  • Consumer expenditure per capita climbed slightly to US$14,539 in 2021, with the indicator expected to continue its recovery by recording 2.0% CAGR 2021-26.
  • Following a sharp fall in 2020, disposable income per capita was recovered somewhat to US$18,250 in 2021. Disposable income per capita is projected to show 1.9% CAGR 2021-26.
Data

Data

Organic Packaged Food And Beverage Data

Data type

Unit

2018

2019

2020

2021

2022

2023

2024

2025

CAGR
(18-21)

CAGR
(22-25)

Health & wellness products consumption [1]

USD million

1,847.6

1,849.5

1,922.6

1,944.4

1,968.3

2,004.6

2,042.2

2,090.1

1.7%

2.0%

Organic packaged food and beverages consumption

USD million

26.9

28.9

30.8

32.6

34.4

36.2

37.5

38.9

6.6%

4.2%

Organic packaged food consumption

USD million

26.9

28.9

30.8

32.6

34.4

36.2

37.5

38.9

6.6%

4.2%

Organic beverages consumption

USD million

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

-

-

Organic packaged food and beverages consumption as a % of total health & wellness products consumption

%

1.5%

1.6%

1.6%

1.7%

1.7%

1.8%

1.8%

1.9%

-

-

 

[1] Health and Wellness Definition: Health and wellness is the aggregation of organic packaged food and beverages, fortified/functional packaged food and beverages, naturally healthy packaged food and beverages, better for you packaged food and beverages and food intolerance products. The above definition and more can be referenced from the definitions table at the end of the report.

Economic And Demographic Data

Data type

Unit

2018

2019

2020

2021

2022

2023

2024

2025

Total population

million

9.4

9.5

9.3

9.3

9.4

9.5

9.6

9.7

% Middle and upper class of total population

%

28.8

28.7

28.5

28.5

28.5

28.4

28.4

28.3

% Population aged 65+

%

1.1

1.1

1.2

1.4

1.6

1.8

2.2

2.6

% Population aged 0-14

%

12.4

12.5

12.2

12.3

12.4

12.6

12.7

12.8

% Population with higher education degrees

%

36.9

37.7

38.4

39.1

39.6

40.0

40.4

40.7

Average number of children per household

children

0.8

0.8

0.8

0.8

0.8

0.8

0.8

0.8

GDP per capita

USD per capita

45,075.6

44,313.3

41,004.1

44,095.5

45,457.1

46,428.0

47,184.9

47,965.4

Consumer expenditure per capita (US$)

USD per capita

16,205.2

16,242.7

14,294.6

14,539.2

15,035.9

15,302.8

15,515.4

15,774.1

Consumer expenditure per capita on food and non-alcoholic beverages (US$)

USD per capita

2,225.3

2,229.4

1,988.6

1,979.4

2,033.9

2,066.4

2,092.9

2,124.7

 

Retailer And City Data

Top 5 Cities By Population

Data category

Rank

City/retailer

Population
(millions)

Top cities by population (2021)

1

Dubai

5.3

Top cities by population (2021)

2

Abu Dhabi

1.8

Top cities by population (2021)

3

Al Ain

0.9

Top cities by population (2021)

4

Ras al-Khaimah

0.3

Top cities by population (2021)

5

Fujairah

0.1

 

Top 5 Grocery Retailers By Sales

Data category

Rank

City/retailer

Top grocery retailers by sales (2021)

1

Carrefour SA

Top grocery retailers by sales (2021)

2

Consumer Co-operative Union (CCU)

Top grocery retailers by sales (2021)

3

Lulu Group International LLC

Top grocery retailers by sales (2021)

4

New West Zone Supermarket & Department Store LLC

Top grocery retailers by sales (2021)

5

Al Maya Group

 

United States Department Of Agriculture Global Agricultural Trade System Data

Top 5 Export Commodities To United Arab Emirates

Year

Country

Rank of
Product/Commodity

Product/Commodity

Export Value (US$)

2021

United Arab Emirates

1

Organic Strawberries Fresh

4,278,666

2021

United Arab Emirates

2

Organic Berries Fresh

2,735,294

2021

United Arab Emirates

3

Organic Cult Blueberries Fresh

799,493

2021

United Arab Emirates

4

Organic Vinegar and Substitutes

762,526

2021

United Arab Emirates

5

Organic Tomato Sauce Ex Ketchup

724,188

2021

United Arab Emirates

Total

Total Organics*

10,720,536

2020

United Arab Emirates

1

Organic Strawberries Fresh

2,998,150

2020

United Arab Emirates

2

Organic Berries Fresh

1,722,487

2020

United Arab Emirates

3

Organic Vinegar and Substitutes

1,268,043

2020

United Arab Emirates

4

Organic Carrots Fr/Ch

568,053

2020

United Arab Emirates

5

Organic Cult Blueberries Fresh

292,974

2020

United Arab Emirates

Total

Total Organics*

7,780,321

2019

United Arab Emirates

1

Organic Berries Fresh

3,586,264

2019

United Arab Emirates

2

Organic Strawberries Fresh

2,086,907

2019

United Arab Emirates

3

Organic Cult Blueberries Fresh

1,132,202

2019

United Arab Emirates

4

Organic Carrots Fr/Ch

680,575

2019

United Arab Emirates

5

Organic Asparagus Fr/Ch

328,860

2019

United Arab Emirates

Total

Total Organics*

8,711,088

2018

United Arab Emirates

1

Organic Berries Fresh

3,702,523

2018

United Arab Emirates

2

Organic Strawberries Fresh

3,574,158

2018

United Arab Emirates

3

Organic Cult Blueberries Fresh

1,747,793

2018

United Arab Emirates

4

Organic Carrots Fr/Ch

691,303

2018

United Arab Emirates

5

Organic Apples Fresh

425,616

2018

United Arab Emirates

Total

Total Organics*

10,704,852

 

Note : Total organics is the sum of all exports to a country within a year

Definitions

Definitions

Term

Definition

Health and Wellness

Health and wellness is the aggregation of organic packaged food and beverages, fortified/functional packaged food and beverages, naturally healthy packaged food and beverages, better for you packaged food and beverages and food intolerance products.

Organic packaged foods and beverages

This category includes packaged food & beverages that are certified organic by an approved certification body. Organic production is based on:

• A system of farming that maintains and replenishes soil fertility without the use of toxic and persistent pesticides and fertilizers.
• Organic food & beverages are minimally processed without artificial ingredients, preservatives or irradiation.
• The use of GMOs (Genetically Modified Organism) is prohibited. “Certified Organic” means the item has been grown according to strict uniform standards that are verified by independent state or private organizations.
• Depending on the country, such products are called ‘organic’, ‘biological’ or ‘ecological’: For organic products to be included under Euromonitor definitions, the organic aspect needs to form part of positioning/marketing of the product. This is an aggregation of organic baby food, bakery, confectionery, dairy, ice cream, oils and fats, ready meals, rice, sauces, dressings and condiments, snack bars, soups, spreads, sweet and savory snacks and other organic food.

Note that fresh food products or individual ingredients are not included in this definition.

Compound annual growth rate (CAGR)

The compound annual growth rate (CAGR) is the average annual growth rate over a specified period of time. For instance, the CAGR consumption of from 2018 – 2021 will be the average growth rates across these three years.

USDA GATS data clarification

The data presented in table 2.4 represents the dollar values of the top 5 organic commodities as well as of the total organic exports of the trade partner for the period 2018-2021 as per the United States Department of Agriculture’s Global Agricultural Trade System, a database consisting of international agricultural, fish, forest and textile products trade statistics dating from the inception of the Harmonized coding system in 1989 to present.

Policy Information

Policy Information

Government Agency(s) / Competent Authority

Authorized Government Agency(s):

United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a member of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) that includes Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, and Saudi Arabia. Gulf Standards Organization (GSO) is responsible for developing food and non food standards in the GCC. Once a new standard is approved by the GSO food standards committee, each member country officially adopts the standard, thus making it a national standard as well as a GSO standard

Ministry of Climate Change and Environment

Emirates Authority for Standardization and Metrology (ESMA) 

Agency(s) Contact Information:

GCC Standardization Organization (GSO)
Riyadh - Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
AlGadeer - Olaya Street
P.O.Box 85245 Riyadh 11691
Phone: (+96611) 2746655
Fax: (+96611) 2105391
Email: csc@gso.org.sa
Website

Ministry of Climate Change and Environment
Abu Dhabi Main Office:
Old Airport Road
Behind Carrefour
Opposite Abu Dhabi Retirement Pensions & Benefits Fund
P.O. Box 213
Phone: 971 02 4444747
Fax: 971 02 4490444
Email: adarchieve@moccae.gov.ae
Webiste
Organic farming information

Emirates Authority for Standardization and Metrology (ESMA)
Business Avenue Building - Sheikh Rashid Rd - Dubai
Telephone: 600565554
Email: customercare@esma.gov.ae
Website

Organic Regulations and/or Standards

Name(s) of Regulation and/or Standard:

Law No.5 of 2009 regarding organic products (Available in Arabic)

GSO 2374:2014 Guidelines for the Production, Processing, Labelling and Marketing of Organically Produced Foods

Date of Implementation: 2012

Regulation and/or Standard Scope:

The GSO standard applies to unprocessed plants and plant products, livestock and livestock products, and processed agricultural crop and livestock products intended for human consumption. A product will be regarded as bearing indications referring to organic production methods where, in the labelling or claims, including advertising material or commercial documents, the product, or its ingredients, is described by the terms “organic”, “biodynamic”, “biological”, “ecological”, or words of similar intent including diminutives which, in the country where the product is placed on the market, suggests to the purchaser that the product or its ingredients were obtained according to organic production methods.

Imported Products

According to a 2015 Gulf News report, imports that are not certified by an organization approved by the Emirates Authority for Standardization and Metrology will be stopped at the port. 

GCC Guide for Control on Imported Foods is useful for all food imports.

Certification and Accreditation

Certification:

All farms producing organic products must be registered and approved by the ministry. Organic products must be certified by the Emirates Authority for Standardization and Metrology (ESMA); imports must be certified by an organization approved by ESMA.

Additional Information

A copy of the regulations can be purchased in English via https://estore.esma.gov.ae/e-store/Default/stdDetails.aspx?std=3856

USDA's GAIN Report Food Processing Ingredients (2022)
USDA's GAIN Report Food and Agricultural Import Regulations and Standards Export Certificate Report (2021)
USDA's GAIN Report Food and Agricultural Import Regulations and Standards Report Country Report (2021)
USDA's GAIN Report Retail Foods (2021)
USDA's GAIN Report Exporter Guide Annual Report for the United Arab Emirates (2015)
USDA's GAIN Report United Arab Emirates Food and Agricultural Import Regulations and Standards - Narrative (2014)