Qatari products and local farms have started to make its presence felt in the market, at the right time when Qatar is trying to achieve self-sufficiency in food. Though, Qatari products have always been in the market, the siege imposed on Qatar has allowed the local products to make a strong come back.
The manufacturing of the local products has been increased since the blockade to meet the needs of the market.
The ministry of economy and commerce has backed the local products with the support of major shopping malls by asking them to display the products by placing a special logo on local goods. The Ministry urged all restaurants and cafeterias in Qatar to use local products in order to support these initiatives.
To encourage local production, Minister of Municipality and Environment H E Mohammad bin Abdullah Al Rumaihi stated in a statement earlier that two agricultural production complexes for livestock, poultry, fish and feed production will be opened with the support of Qatar Development Bank (QDB).
Assistant Undersecretary for Agriculture and Fisheries Affairs at the Ministry of Municipality and Environment Sheikh Dr Faleh bin Nasser Al-Thani said that new livestock production projects in Qatar involves Baladna livestock farm, which targets 40 percent share in dairy products’ market in the country.
He also informed that local brands like Ghadeer, Maha and Dandy have all increased their production in a bid to make Qatar self-sufficient after six months.
In the red meat sector, Qatar is witnessing a 20 percent increase annually in the number of animals. He noted that the total number of these animals in the country is 1.35 million, 70 percent of them sheep.
Coming to poultry production, the Arab poultry company is increasing its production by 100 percent, with this expansion Qatar expects to be self-sufficient in fresh poultry in less than a year.
There are also some strategic projects launched by the private sector recently, including one where they are planning to produce 40 million chickens annually.
Speaking about egg production, Sheikh Dr Faleh said that as part of the efforts to expand the Arab Qatari company for poultry production to increase its products by 100%, and thus increase the production of eggs from 60 million eggs to 100 million eggs per year, bringing the total number, after the completion of expansion within the next six months, to about 120 million eggs per year.
It should be noted that Qatar has already achieved self-sufficiency in fishery sector by reaching 89 percent, The State has 3 fish farming projects and their combined production is about 6 thousand tonnes per year.
The QDB organized a ‘Buy Local Products’ forum on July 11, which brought together 70 Qatari companies from five key sectors along with 250 local buyers to encourage small and medium enterprises to expand their local business in sectors such as steel and iron, plastics, wood, aluminum and copper, and general building materials.
Motivated by the success, QDB organised a second edition of the “Buy Local Products” exhibition on July 25.
Meanwhile, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed between QDB and Public Works Authority (Ashghal) to launch the ‘Ta’heel’ initiative for SME. It allows factories to participate in the implementation of Ashghal’s programmes and projects.
Hassad Food, Qatar’s leading investor in food and agri-business sectors, announced the launch of its new initiative ‘IKTEFA’ through which it will target unproductive local farms, these farms represents more than 80 percent of registered local farms. Through IKTEFA, Hassad Food will purchase farmer’s yearly production of fresh vegetables and fruits and then will sell them in the local market.
“Through our partnership with Widam Food, Hassad Australia will provide the local market with more than 340,000 head of Australian sheep (chilled carcasses) over the course of three months, started in June,” Hassad Food CEO Mohamed Al Sadah said.
Hassad will be offering several services to the participating local farms which includes support in developing feasibility studies for the farms seeking financial support from concerned entities to build green houses, supply of agricultural inputs (delayed payment for a period not more than 90 days,) technical supervision for the farms, purchase of the farms yearly production from fresh produce under clear commercial terms agreed by both parties in addition to logistical support and other services.
The company has announced around 60 hectares will be targeted in the first phase, which produces yearly around 5000 tons of fresh produce, this figure will increase gradually over the next phases.
An internal committee has been formed to review and assess the submitted requests, and then select the local farms.