Qatari products have managed to lock horns with products from around the world in the Qatari market at the right time as Qatar strives for self-sufficiency in food.
The crisis has allowed the local products, which has always been in the market, to shine after the closure of borders from neighbours. The local products have occupied the market since the blockade on June 5.
Even the government launched initiatives to support and encourage the local companies to increase productions, shopping malls were asked to display the products clearly by placing a national product logo.
Citizens and residents in Qatar welcomed the call and launched campaigns on social media to support national products under the theme “Together to Support National Products”.
The Minister of Municipality and Environment H E Mohammad bin Abdullah Al Rumaihi said that based on the directives of the Emir H H Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, the ministry is supporting farmers and organising such production festivals, which will continue to distinguish them from year to year in terms of quantity and quality of production.
Assistant Undersecretary for Agriculture and Fisheries Affairs at the Ministry of Municipality and Environment H E Dr Sheikh Faleh bin Nasser Al Thani said the livestock production projects will be implemented soon and informed that these new projects in Qatar include Baladna livestock farm which targets 40 percent share in dairy products’ market in the country.
The likes of Ghadeer, Maha and Dandy diary companies will expand their production to make the country self-sufficient after six months.
Speaking about the red meat sector, Qatar is witnessing an increase in the number of animals by 20% annually, while working on the development of breeding and increasing the number of animals, noting that the total number of these animals in the country reaches 1.35 million, 70 percent of them are sheep.
The Arab poultry company will be increasing its capacity by 100 percent, which will make Qatar self-sufficient in fresh poultry within a year.
Coming to the egg production, Dr Sheikh Faleh bin Nasser Al Thani told that the increase in poultry production will allow the production of eggs production also to increase to 100 million from 60 million.
He touched on the efforts of Qatar to develop Qatari farms, including the prolongation of the agricultural season for 9 months a year, contributing to the plan to achieve 65 percent of self-sufficiency in vegetables within two years from now.
Meanwhile, Qatar has achieved self-sufficiency in the fishery sector by reaching 89%, and plans to reach 100% in a year.
Qatar Development Bank has concentrated on growth and improving national projects within the private sector activities in key economic areas. It also looks to encourage local entrepreneurs in the private sector.
The bank hosted an event called ‘Buy Local Products’ which saw 70 Qatari companies from key sectors along with 250 local buyers coming together to encourage small and medium enterprises.
Since it turned out to be a success, the bank organised the second edition of the event which saw more companies turn up. On the sidelines of the forum, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed between QDB and Ashghal to launch the ‘Ta’heel’ initiative for SME.
QDB Chief Executive Officer Abdulaziz bin Nasser Al Khalifa told QNA that “The role of QDB is to support Qatari entrepreneurs and SME entrepreneurs by opening new horizons for them”
Hassad Food, Qatar’s premier investor in food and agri-business sector, announced the launch of IKTEFA to support the local market demand. The initiative aims to increase the role of local farms and use its commercial operations.
Hassad Food CEO Mohamed Al Sada said that the initiative is a continuation of company’s constant efforts to support and encourage local market demand.
The range of high quality products provided by Hassad include: Dairy Products, Table Eggs, Poultry, Fresh Vegetables and Fruits, from more than 10 countries including Turkey, Kuwait, Azerbaijan, Oman and Lebanon.
“Hassad Food will provide all needed support and services to the participating local farm owners in order to produce high quality products to the local market. We coordinated with a number of corporations in friendly countries to provide the local market with a steady supply of high quality strategic products, in a cost effective manner,” Al Sadah said.
“Our first shipment arrived to Qatar on June 6, and since then we are supplying the market with daily shipments that are in line with the market need. 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,” Al Sadah added.
Hassad will be offering several services for the participating farms like 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.
An internal committee will be formed to review the submitted requests and select the farms which are in line with the specifications.