Food is an important part of Ramadan traditions. The types of food served vary by country and regions, but key ingredients remain the same.
It has been observed that as a number of traditional Ramadan dishes have lamb and poultry as main protein, sales of Lamb and Poultry items increase significantly. Correspondingly, there is a drop in the consumption of Beef and Seafood items.
Rick Malhotra, Finance Director at Elfab Co. says, “For over 40 years, Elfab Co. (L.L.C.) has observed that Hotels and restaurants make changes to their menus to offer traditional Iftar dishes to their guests. Supermarkets change their offerings to customers to meet increased demand for lamb and poultry. Cooking traditional dishes at home often includes Lamb and Poultry. To manage this change in consumer consumption, we have over the years adjusted our product mix accordingly. Planning for this change in consumption patterns is critical and takes place well in advance.”
Some of the Popular items for which the demand goes up during the Holy month of Ramadan include:
Frozen Poultry: Chicken Breast, Chicken Thighs, and Chicken Shawarma.
Chilled Lamb: Lamb Leg Bone In, Lamb Leg Boneless, Lamb Hind Shanks, Lamb Shoulder Bone In, and Lamb Shoulder BoneLess.
Frozen Lamb: Lamb Ouzi (Carcass)
Due to the pandemic, last year was challenging with strict restrictions in place, hotel and restaurant closures etc. While the quantities of products moving in the market were comparatively less, the mix of products (Lamb and Poultry) remained the same.
Increase in Online Orders:
Also there is a new trend in terms of greater volume of online orders. There are different reasons for this increase –
- convenience; during lockdown people were unable to go out and turned to online ordering and stayed with online ordering;
- people chose and still choose not to go to crowded supermarkets because of Covid;
- consumers became more comfortable with online orderings and stayed with trusted online suppliers.
Rick Malhotra, Finance Director at Elfab Co. adds,” We revamped our e-commerce platform elfabshop.com drastically in 2020 to match with the greater volume of demand online. We increased the number of items to approximately 250 and on the parallel side worked on providing a seamless delivery experience to our customers.”
Rick Malhotra, adds, “We believe that the mix of requested items (Lamb and Poultry) will remain the same this year, and are optimistic that sales will increase compared to last year.”
Some of the most popular Emirati lamb and poultry dishes cooked during the Holy Month of Ramadan include:
Aishu Laham: is definitely a family favourite at Iftar. The satisfying dish has generous portions of rice and lamb, flavoured with ginger, garlic, dried lime and saffron.
Machboos: originated in Saudi Arabia but is a traditional dish across many countries in the Middle East. The dish is made from basmati rice, cooked in an abundance of flavourful spices with meat. Chicken and lamb are both popular options.
Lamb Ouzi: Ouzi is the Lebanese word for a dish of baked lamb and spiced rice. A blend of sweet spices, including allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and cardamom, gives the recipe its Middle Eastern accent.
Harees: is a dish of boiled, cracked, or coarsely-ground wheat, mixed with meat and seasoned.
Thareed: is a traditional Arab dish made from pieces of bread in a vegetable or meat broth.
Samboosa: It is considered a Ramadan staple, being an essential inclusion in typical iftar feasts. It is a fried or baked pastry with a savory filling, such as spiced potatoes, onions, peas,chicken and other meats.
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