GCC plans Greek yoghurt expansion

By Eliot Beer

- Last updated on GMT

GCC plans Greek yoghurt expansion

Related tags: United arab emirates

Turkish food producer Pinar plans to grow its presence in the GCC with new facilities and products, building on the high market penetration of its labneh in the region.

According to Pinar, a recent AC Nielsen retail report showed the firm’s labneh – more commonly known as ‘Greek’ yoghurt in the west – captured 52% of the market in Kuwait, 37% in the UAE and 28% in Saudi Arabia, measured by value.

Pinar eyes GCC’s growing population

The regional food market, is rapidly rising simultaneous with its booming population. Pinar will capitalise on this growth by focusing in areas that will further solidify our leading industry position​,” said Arda Cenk Tokbas, general manager of Pinar’s UAE subsidiary HDF.

We are looking at further broadening our operations and market presence as a demonstration of our commitment to contribute to the GCC's further development. The move will also enable us to reach a wider number of households in the long term. Due to its strategic geographical location, the Emirates has become an important key point for our strategic expansion plan​,” he added.

Pinar’s labneh also won the Product of the Year award for the second year running earlier in 2016. The French award is voted on in the GCC by 3,600 regional consumers, polled by research firm TNS.

The results of the TNS survey highly reflect our consumers’ trust and confidence in our brand. Additionally, it demonstrates our commitment to continuously provide excellent products to our target market​,” said Tokbas.

We extend our gratitude to our loyal consumers for their unwavering support. Inspired by their loyalty, rest assured that we will continue to live up to our mission and deliver on our commitment​,” he added.

Major dairy exporter

Pinar, which is owned by Yasar Holding, has been established in the GCC since 2000, when it set up HDF in Dubai’s Jebel Ali Free Zone. According to the firm, it exports around 40% of its dairy production.

Pinar Sut, the firm’s dairy division, is the most important exporter to the Middle East, offering labneh and cheese products. The firm’s other divisions include Pinar Su, which produces mineral water, and Pinar Et, which produces meat products.

According to Pinar’s full-year results for 2015, Pinar Sut made a profit of US$21m, down 29% from the year before, while Pinar Et saw its profits rise 50% to US$22.5m. Pinar Su made a loss of US$3m, compared to a slight profit in 2014.

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