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Revealed: Most common, popular foods in UAE as eating patterns shift post-Covid

A recent report from UAE-based investment banking advisory firm Alpen Capital sheds light on the evolving eating habits of UAE residents following the Covid-19 pandemic. Cereals retain their position as the most popular and common food, with a gradual shift toward healthier alternatives.

Categorizing Consumption Trends

While cereals remain a staple with a modest growth projection, the vegetable category is anticipated to witness the highest annualized growth rate. This shift is attributed to health-conscious consumers and an increased demand for pesticide-free, nutrition-rich food.

Key Findings from the Report: post-Covid

Examining the average diet in the UAE, cereals constitute 37.4%, followed by fruits (17.6%) and milk/dairy products (8.5%). Vegetables account for 17.4%, and meat makes up 11.8% of the total food consumption.

Future Dietary Shifts

The report projects a substantial increase in meat consumption, leading the way for vegetables, cereals, fruits, and milk. Alpen Capital predicts a 3.3% growth in food consumption, reaching 10.4 million metric tons in 2027.

Driving Forces Behind Food Demand

Factors contributing to this growth include a growing population, the return of expatriates and tourists post-Covid, and a healthy rise in economic indicators. The expected increase in restaurant sales is set to reach Dh86.4 billion ($23.5 billion) by 2027, marking a significant 48% surge.

Dubai’s Culinary Hub Status

Dubai has solidified its position as a global gastronomical hub, attracting renowned chefs and culinary innovators. With over 13,000 F&B outlets, including Michelin-star restaurants, the city continues to be a beacon for diverse culinary experiences.

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