Minerva Foods: Halal consumption grows in the Middle East

Murilo Corral dos Santos , export director at Minerva Foods, stated in his participation in the second edition of the Global Halal Brazil Business Forum that the company's commercial strategy is closely linked to the Middle East.

Posted on Oct 30 ,00:10

Minerva Foods: Halal consumption grows in the Middle East

He cited projections on the halal market in the world based on the USDA to show that, from 2018 to 2024, an increase of 24% in both imports and consumer demand is estimated. markets in the Middle East and North Africa.

Saudi Arabia appears with an increase of 35%, in the space of five to six years, and the United Arab Emirates, with an expansion of 12%. Egypt had a decrease in its consumption, but a significant increase in its production. Even so, the country still has an import need of around 32%.

In markets outside this region, such as the Philippines, 52% of beef consumption requires imports. In Malaysia, this number is even higher: 96%. "We have a responsibility as a company to not only serve the Middle East and North African markets, but also all halal markets around the world", predicted Santos.

In 2008, Minerva went public and went to the market in search of investors who believed in the company. At that time, it had seven plants, one of them in Paraguay.

In 2015, the company set foot in Colombia. At that time, it already had 17 plants - one for processing - and was already in four countries: Brazil, Uruguay, Paraguay and Colombia.

Today, Minerva has 30 industries, three processing plants, two in Argentina, one in Brazil, and is present in six countries: Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, Argentina, Colombia and Australia. The company considers geographic diversification to be an extremely relevant item in its commercial strategy, as it allows it to mitigate risks by not depending on a single market. "We have a business platform established in six markets that allows us to reach customers around the world in a much less risky way", said Santos.

Minerva currently has the capacity to slaughter 30,000 heads of beef in Brazil and 19,000 heads of lamb in Australia. Another important point, said the executive, are the international offices. The company is 31 years old, and 28 years ago it exported beef for the first time to the Lebanese market, where it set up its first office abroad. “And, in this same business model, we expanded to three other offices in order to cover 100% of the world.”

The strategy is to be close to the customer and have people who understand the local culture. According to Santos, this is very important to understand how to offer solutions to this client in a more sustainable way. The company's CCO is based in Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates, "one flight away" from any country and between Asia and Latin America, allowing full coverage of time zones, streamlining communication and facilitating transmission information between the offices and countries where the company operates. In the Middle East, it has offices in Algeria, Egypt, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and Dubai.

From 2022 to 2023, in the period from January to September, the volume of halal products shipped to the Middle East and North Africa increased by 12%. Excluding these markets, exports of halal products practically tripled compared to 2021 and 2022.

"Part of our responsibility is to look at Muslim markets around the world, and they are not only located in the Middle East and North Africa, but also in Asia, Europe and the Americas", explained Santos.

Global Halal is sponsored by BRF, Marfrig, Minerva Foods, Laila Travel, Turkish Airlines and Embratur, in partnership with Apex Brasil, the Islamic Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture, the Union of Arab Chambers and the Arab League, and support from the Halal Academy.

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