Barakat: a benchmark of enhanced healthy food

The group keeps innovating and consolidating its leadership in the Gulf in the manufacturing of fresh cuts and juices.
Fri 02/12/2022 by Pierre Escodo
Barakat Group CEO Kenneth D´Costa
Fresh iceTea with peach mint flavour
Barakat JuicePops with strawberry banana flavour
MyD new range of "super juices" with bio-available vitamins and active compounds .
Barakat juice with biodegradable bottle and cap

For five decades, the Barakat brand has been trusted by consumers for its fresh produce and value-added products in the UAE. “We will continue to build on the brand, bringing together quality, innovation and customer service to deliver a delightful fresh experience to our customers across B2B and B2C,” said Kenneth D’Costa, Managing Director at Barakat. Among the latest new products introduced are freshly brewed iced teas, ghaf drinks, MyD and juice-pops. The group keeps expanding its distribution reach in Oman and will continue working towards serving other markets in the GCC, where Barakat’s value-added products are gaining popularity beyond the UAE.

New “super-drinks”

Barakat’s freshly brewed iced teas are exquisite teas brewed daily from natural ingredients. Sweetened with honey (no added sugar), they provide a healthy and refreshing drink, low in calories, and come in 4 flavours: Hibiscus Rose, Peach Mint, Apple Cinnamon and Herbal Basil. They are now available in stores and online across the UAE.

Ghaf drink range: the ghaf tree is the national tree of the United Arab Emirates. Ghaf leaves have been used as a gut health superfood throughout the history of the United Arab Emirates. “In celebration of our heritage, we’re proud to introduce Ghaf Smoothies and Ghaf Shots on the eve of the 51st National Day of the United Arab Emirates. Made using core ingredients grown in our soil, we remain true to our home,” said D’Costa. Barakat honours the spirit of Emirati youngster Salma Alzaabi from Ras-al-Khaimah who developed the method of harvesting the essence of the ghaf leaves without damaging the trees, which helped make this recipe. This initiative is supported by the Khalifa Fund and UAE Food & Beverage Manufacturer’s Group, who jointly organised Innovation Lab 2.0, promoting local innovation and introducing young innovators to the industry.

MyD is a range of fresh juices, enhanced with bio-available vitamins and active compounds like Vitamin D, curcumin and Co Q-10. MyD delivers a daily dose of vitamins in an enjoyable and healthy fresh juice form.

Juice-Pops are frozen fresh juices containing bits of real fresh fruit. The new range of juice-pops is ideal for consumers looking for a frozen treat that is healthier and low-calorie. They come in 4 flavours: strawberry banana, mango passionfruit, lemon mint and choco-coconut.

Barakat’s innovations in sustainability in 2022

The group is one of the first beverage brands in the UAE to use bio-degradable packaging. The new Barakat bottle is no longer made of regular plastic: it biodegrades 90% faster than regular plastic and leaves no micro-plastics behind – instead disintegrating into humus, which is the organic material in soil under industrial landfill conditions. Founded in the UAE and serving the best of fresh since 1976, this step forward by Barakat is in line with the sustainability vision of the UAE

25% sourcing from the Middle East

The fresh fruit category remains ahead of fresh vegetables. Europe continues to be a major source of high-value fresh fruits & vegetables, representing 19% of total import value. The Middle East has strengthened its self-reliance as a supplier of fruits & vegetables, with 17% of Barakat’s purchase value coming from within the region. This, combined with 8% local purchases within the UAE, means that the Middle East contributes a quarter of the total purchase value and almost one-third of the volume. The Far East and North America represent 13% and 11% of imports respectively.

Distribution channels

While for the fresh produce category, the hospitality channel continues to be the major contributor, Barakat has seen phenomenal growth in the retail and e-commerce channels for its manufactured products. “Consumers are more conscious of what goes into their food,” said D’Costa. The fresh juice segment has registered double-digit CAGR growth since the pandemic, with Barakat contributing 25% to the total growth of the juice category over these years. E-commerce has witnessed 40% growth since the start of the pandemic. “Consumers have understood the value of buying fresh online enabled by reliable cold supply chains that preserve freshness,” said D´Costa. This remains a focus area for Barakat, which has expanded same-day delivery via the Barakat app, as consumers increasingly prefer prompt deliveries of high-quality fresh produce.

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