News From : DagangHalal.com (25 Oct 2010)
In an indication that the international halal trade is not a one way street, an UAE based company has decided to enter the French halal market which is estimated at $7.5 billion. On the eve of the just concluded SIAL Expo in France Al Islami Foods announced that it will be introducing its halal products and a restaurant chain in France.
“We are constantly receiving enquiries from franchisees. But we will choose one with high repute and experience in halal restaurant field.” Saleh Lootah, Managing Director, Al Islami Foods, revealed it in response to enquiries from the trade visitors to Al Islami booth at the Expo.
With about six million Muslims, France has the largest population of Muslims in Europe, and they are having an impact on the national food culture.
Saleh Abdullah Lootah, while revealing details of company’s plans of entering France’s halal food market, said:”Due to the gradual growth and high consumer demand for halal food in Europe, we see France as a springboard for Al Islami’s expansion into the European region. From France, expansion to the UK and Benelux markets would be easier at a later stage, as part of company’s BIG 5 (Billion-In-Growth in five years) Plan.”
“I met with the consumers in France. They all ask about the authenticity of halal process, real halal food and halal restaurants. I promised them with conviction to offer Al Islami’s high quality halal and nutrient products to their neighbourhood, not only for Muslims but for the non-Muslims as well. Consumer satisfaction is our aim in the French markets.” Lootah asserted.
Previous attempts of UAE based halal resturant chains in Canada and elsewhere were not successful. It remains to be seen how Al Islami will fare in this endeavor.