LuLu Hypermarket Qatar, in co-operation with the Agricultural Affairs Department at the Ministry of Municipality and Environment (MME), has launched “The Festival of Qatari Farm Products” with the catchline “Qatari Products Our First Choice” at LuLu Hypermarket in Al Gharrafa.
The initiative is in line with the Qatar Farms and Premium Qatari Vegetables programmes for the 2020 season.
The festival was formally inaugurated by Masoud Jarallah al-Marri, director of the MME’s Food Security Department, at a ribbon-cutting ceremony held on Thursday in the presence of Farms Affairs Department head Ahmed Shaheen al-Kuwari; Ahmed Salem al-Yafei, head of the Guidance and Agricultural Services Section at the Agricultural Affairs Department, MME; Mubarak Fereesh and Badr al-Hatmi, members of the Central Municipal Council; and Dr Mohamed Althaf, director of LuLu Hypermarkets.
Many distinguished Qatari nationals and dignitaries from various public and private sector organisations and other senior officials from the LuLu management were also at the ceremony.
The inaugural ceremony was also attended by Mohamed Ismail, head of Farmers Relations and representing Mahaseel, and representatives from various farms.
Addressing the media, al-Marri said that over 150 farms are participating in the festival with varieties of farm fresh vegetables.
“The festival aims to support local farms by providing marketing platforms for their produce in major commercial outlets, under the Ministry of Municipality and Environment’s policy to support local products,” he said.
Al-Marri added that “the launch of this annual festival at the beginning of the season, in co-operation with the LuLu Hypermarket, aims at exhibiting Qatari products prominently to help the local produce compete with the imported ones”.
Al-Kuwari said: “The produce offered at the festival comprises premium-quality local vegetables and fruits. The local farms are offering high-quality agricultural produce at competitive prices.”
He emphasised that “the MME provides marketing platforms at a number of major outlets to support local farms to get suitable prices for their produce”.
Dr Althaf said: “‘The Festival of Qatari Farm Products’ has been launched to announce that the agricultural season has begun in Qatar, during which local farms supply a large quantity of fresh vegetables to the market.”
“The government support has enabled local farmers to offer high-quality produce at very competitive prices, especially during the season,” he added. “The event is also aimed at celebrating the great achievements of local farms in terms of increasing their products significantly this year, compared to the past years.”
An ardent promoter of Qatari food and non-food products and agricultural produce throughout the year, LuLu has provided an exclusive display of almost all prominent Qatari brands, including Baladna, Dandy, Ghadeer, Al Maha, Qbake, Athba, Rawa, qfm, Rayyan, Qatar Pafki, Pearl, Flora, Gourmet, Jerry Smith, Agrico Qatar, Paramount Agricole, Ocean Fish, Napoli Bakeries, Al Waha, Korean Bakeries, Al Manhal, Dana, Aqua Gulf, Safa, Sidra, Lusail, Doha, and Napico, the leading retailer said in a statement.
LuLu Hypermarket has long-standing and close ties-up with local farmers, and has been the focal point in marketing local agricultural produce for many years.
Although LuLu hypermarkets have been promoting Qatari products and farm produce for many years, they have been concentrating more in this regard since June 2017 as a social and economic commitment to the nation, the statement notes.
“The Festival of Qatari Farm Products”, organised by the LuLu Hypermarket chain annually since 2010 in co-operation with the MME, “largely celebrates the agricultural bounty of the nation due to the sustained efforts of the farm owners by relying on advanced agricultural methods”.
“The general awakening in the agricultural sector and in the nation’s economy at large, as a result of recent developments, has been instrumental in achieving self-reliance and sustainability,” the LuLu statement said. “The government authorities have played a pivotal role in this movement, and especially the support being extended by the Ministry of Municipality and Environment to private sector farm owners, has been invaluable in this context.”
“This has encouraged them to make advancements in the agricultural and other related sectors to ensure food security, self-sufficiency and economic efficiency by adopting best practices in farming with the optimal use of resources and minimum impact on the environment,” the statement added.
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