Increase likely to be seen in Bahrain’s food consumption by 26pct

A new report released by London-based Business Monitor International's (BMI) has indicated a likely increase in Bahrain's food consumption by 25.5 per cent in the next four years, with total volumes of food trade reaching a record BD172 million ($456.5m).

The forecast by BMI also specifies that the UAE has been replaced by Bahrain at the top of the regional Food and Drink Business Environment Ratings.

The report said: "Despite its small population, Bahrain provides investors with one of the Gulf region's most upbeat per capita food consumption growth outlook and an attractive investor-friendly regulatory environment."

Bahrain's GDP is predicted to shrink by 0.12pc this year. This comes as a profitable figure, as the report also expects the global output to decrease by 2.3%.

The report continued, "While the global downturn has affected the near-term outlook of many multinational food companies, resilient and brand loyal consumers across the Gulf region have provided respite to companies like Fonterra and Kraft Food."

The New Zealand-based dairy giant Fonterra, in the beginning of the year, had declared that it hoped to see the Gulf region to be a prominent long-term growth market. Fonterra, in each of the last three years, has shown a double-digit growth in its turnover.

"Despite the downturn, it has correctly interpreted that rather than trade down to cheaper brands, most consumers have instead preferred to make savings by purchasing smaller sizes of Fonterra's value added brands, which has kept up volume sales," read the report.