The UAE- a country harboring expats from different corners of the world has stood up as one of the strongest economies with a GDP of AED 1.38 trillion in 2012. With the cluster of seven well-woven emirates making progress in every field, food service sector has come up as one of the most rampant industries offering job opportunities to skilled professionals from all across the globe.
Food and drink manufacturing industry functions in the processing of meat & poultry, dairy, fish, fruit, vegetables etc. and the production of bakery and drink products. There are various companies in the UAE working in the same sector. The leading ones are Abela and Co., Al Ghariar (based in Dubai), National Food products Company, Al Buheira Lacnor Dairy Company LLC, Al kabeer group etc. However, going by the numbers, Masafi Co LLC has come up as the market leader with a share value of 7.3 % in the UAE.
According to a recent report for GCC food industry, the GCC will consume nearly 49.1 million tonnes of food annually by the end of 2017, with UAE to be the largest consumer (in per capita terms).
Moreover, the consumer food service industry is growing at an exponential rate alongside a growing middle-class population, with the value of sales to reach US $ 9.5 billion by the end of year 2014. During 2009-2012, the segment has shown immense growth with sales growing by an astounding 38.1% and further projected to grow at 15.9% by the last quarter of 2014.
Due to constant efforts by the regime to promote health amongst the Emirati population, the fresh and organic food industry is also on the rise with an expected growth rate of 18% by the end of this year.
Sources also suggest that the compound annual growth rate in food consumption, not only in the UAE but in all 6 countries in the GCC, will increase by 301 %, by the end of 2017. To meet this high demand, abundant job opportunities are expected in the industry.
What are the Jobs this sector has to offer?
There are numerous employment options
in this field offers at the disposal of a qualified professional. However, the 4 most prominent ones are discussed below.
A professional hired by the food manufacturing and retail companies, universities, government firms and different research consultancies, food technologist is responsible for planning the manufacturing of food products and beverages.
She/he can work in different settings, which might include options like kitchens, factories, laboratories and offices.
The specific responsibilities can be sought from the points mentioned below.
• Generating and introducing new product ideas and recipes.
• Modifying and improving existing recipes.
• Planning processes and equipment for the production of food products on a large scale.
• Liaising with market professionals.
• Supervising the use of additives in food products.
• Identifying and picking up products from the suppliers.
A food technologist working in the UAE earns AED 60,000 per annum (as on 2nd Sep 2014).
Regional Sales Manager
A sales manager’s responsibilities can be understood from the following points:-
• Achieve sales and profit goals for the designated territory.
• Forecast sales figures for a region: set and convey the departmental objectives.
• Develop and supervise the execution of sales plan for the assigned region/clients.
• Organizing quarterly and yearly business review with key clients, analyzing performance versus plan for various food products, the effectiveness of various programs and the prospects of further growth.
• Leveraging existing relationships and agreements to drive revenue from different investors.
A sales manager in the UAE earns nearly AED 291,482 per year on an average (as on 2nd Sep 2014).
Responsible for technical management, supervision and control of production processes, a production manager has some key areas which have to be looked after on a regular basis.
• Designing and organizing production schedules.
• Evaluating project’s resource requirements.
• Determining and keeping a check on quality control standards
• Estimating and negotiating production expenses and timescales with clients and administration.
• Organizing the repair and routine maintenance of equipment used in manufacturing.
The average salary of a production manager in the UAE is AED 184,919 per year (as on 2nd Sep 2014).
There are abundant accounting and finance jobs in the food and beverage industry. The most prominent one is that of a finance manager.
Applying for this profile, you need to possess certain skills like attention to detail, reporting skills, numeric competence along with a degree in finance or accounting. Some of the key certifications include: Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Certified Financial Planner (CFP) and Certified Financial Manager (CFM).
The key responsibilities of a finance manager is designing the budget for a food manufacturing firm, allocating resources according to the budget, contributing innovative ideas to ensure judicious use of the monetary resources etc.
A finance manager in the food manufacturing sector in the UAE on an average earns AED 234,708 per annum (as on 2nd Sep 2014).
The Food sector in the UAE stands as a perfect option for those having the right skills and prowess in this field. Getting the right opportunity depends on your zeal to be a professional in the food sector. So, stay determined and keep trying, because the emirates have always been to the rescue of a skilled job-seeker.
About the author
Author: Anshuman Kukreti
Anshuman Kukreti is a professional writer and a keen follower of the global job market. An engineer by qualification and an artist at heart, he writes on various topics relating to employment across the gulf
. Reach him @ LinkedIn