Melwin Joy
AUTHOR

Melwin Joy

All stories by: Melwin Joy
Delta Food – Relishing success

‘Phenomenal growth’ is a term that is rarely accurate when talking about a company. Securing the position of the second largest food manufacturing and packaging company of the Middle East is no mean feat in itself. But, considering that Delta Food is only five years old, ‘phenomenal’ seems the only word to describe its truly inspiring growth and enviable ranking.

Such exceptional success calls for clear vision, meticulous planning, brilliant team work, favourable market conditions and an element of luck; Delta Food Industries seems to have ticked all the boxes.

Food preferences and food preparation habits are changing along with our changing lifestyles. Most of us have reached for a pre-packaged meal or canned food item, at one time or another. Their easy, year round availability, convenience and affordability are driving up the popularity of canned Food. Such products are no longer limited to the developed world; tinned food is making steady inroads into the developing countries and new markets; thanks to attractive marketing and increased trade.

Food industry is one of the fastest growing and the most competitive sectors in the world. Providing good quality fare at competitive prices is the challenge faced by every brand. With numerous brands selling the same item, it is indeed a daunting task to garner and maintain a sizeable market share. The edge enjoyed by a brand is often the result of the coming together of many factors such as raw materials, technology and marketing strategy.

Established in 2011, Delta Food today is not only second in production capacity but is also one of the fastest growing food exporters of UAE. It is a major player in the canned food industry and holds a sizable market share in 20 countries in the GCC, Middle East and Africa. Delta Food manufacturers and packages a variety of products including tomato paste, tomato ketchup, hot sauce, milk powder, custard powder and oats. Today, the multi-million dollar company has a production capacity of around four containers a day across its product lines and exports have crossed 300 containers a month!

Founded by Mr. Shiraz Osman along with the multi-talented Dr. Ali Parpinchi, entrepreneur Mr. Ammar Bilaspurwala and his brother Mr. Hozefa Ibrahim; the company started with the brands Delta Royale and Delta Milko, which is one of the most prestigious and leading brands in the Middle East and Africa today.

Strategic partnerships paved the way for exponential growth. Delta Food’s association with Rafi Agri Food goes back to its early days. Having remained a preferred supplier of raw materials and agri-commodities to Delta Food, the firm picked up a 20% stake in the company in 2015. A leading agri-commodity trading firm, it is a 50/50 joint venture between Rafi International FZC and Canada based Ronald. A. Chisholm Ltd. (est. 1938). The company has a turnover of over US$1.5billion and a market in over 60 countries worldwide. This profitable move enables Delta Food to take advantage of Rafi Agri’s relations with suppliers around the world and to utilize their insight into the diary industry.

In addition to its 110,000 square feet of manufacturing space, Delta Food opened a dairy plant inside the prestigious Sharjah Airport International Free Zone (SAIF-Zone) in March of 2016. With a capital investment of AED 40 million (US$ 11m), this manufacturing facility has a capacity to produce 250,000 cartons of evaporated cream and milk in a month. Using the latest technology and certified machinery imported from Europe and India, the plant is designed to double its capacity by adding just one Steriflow. Cutting edge technology and automated manufacturing processes reduce production time and overheads, making the brand highly profitable and competitive.

DELTA Food has continually upped its production capacity and volumes in response to increased demand. The company has it eyes firmly trained on the needs of its clients and consumers. A case in point is the varying quantities of tomato paste packages in the market. Initially, they were two options: 400 gm and 850 gm. Today, tomato paste reaches the market from Delta Food packaging facilities in 70g, 175g, 370ml, 1.6 kg, 2.2 kg and 4.5 kg packages. This is a definite indication of the robustness of Delta Food’s production process and the proactive approach of its management.

DELTA Food growth strategy is not just about entering and conquering new markets. Stringent measures are inbuilt into their various processes to ensure quality and safety of the products. No effort is spared at the Delta Food facilities to guarantee that food packaged and manufactured here, is of the best quality and highest standards. Such measures go a long way in improving the nutritional quality, shelf life of the products and winning them loyal customers. Working closely with Sharjah Municipalities and SAIF-Zone, the company consistently adheres to the health and safety guidelines set out by the local and international bodies. Delta Food products and production processes are ISO 22000, ISO 9000, HACCP and HALAL certified.

“Delta’s USP is the manufacturing of goods in private labels, so not marketing the Delta brand on the packaged products; a strategy which most competitors don’t entertain,” Chairman Osman opines. “Delta aims for quality production and timely disposition of deliverables, and these are the key factors that establish trust and credibility with our partners and customers.” Having started with Delta Royale and Delta Milko, the company has expanded its portfolio periodically. Today, they offer corn starch, custard and much more.

Having started with Delta Royale and Delta Milko, the company has expanded its portfolio periodically. They offer corn starch, custard powder, evaporated milk, sterilized cream, hot sauce, milk powder, oats and semolina besides tomato paste and tomato ketchup. The diverse packaging options in terms of material (glass, PET, tetra pack etc.) and quantities has enabled them to maintain a steady growth in the market place.

DELTA Food has met and crossed every challenge with ease, raising the bar every time. Their product line is all set to witness a substantial expansion with the addition of popular and sought after products. Having invested wisely in R&D base and ably supported by an in-house supply chain management, the company is well on its way to consolidating its markets and conquering new domains.

Firm strategies are already in place. Delta Food will soon bring to the market a wider product range, including chilli sauce, hot sauce, BBQ sauces and juices. Tuna, butter, yoghurt and cheese are all in the pipeline. Customers can also look forward to canned vegetables, flavoured milk and protein powder from Delta Food in the near future. The very aim of the company is to provide a wide variety of food items in order to meet all the requirements and demands of tinned
food consumers.

DELTA Food has successfully created a loyal client base and made their presence felt across markets in Comoros, Guinea, Ethiopia, Iraq, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Nigeria, Oman, Qatar, Somalia, South Africa, Sudan, Yemen, Kenya, Djibouti, Libya, Mozambique, Guinea Bissau and UAE. Next on the cards, is a dedicated can manufacturing unit spread over an area of 5000 square meters. Saud Salim

Next on the cards, is a dedicated can manufacturing unit spread over an area of 5000 square meters. Saud Salim Al Mazrouei, Director of SAIF Zone signed the contract for the same with Shiraz Osman, Chairman and founder of Delta Food Industries, Safdar Khatri and Sharad Anand, CEO of Anand Tin Containers. With the consumption of packing materials increasing in proportion with the expansion of their product line and volume, the company has decided to go in for further vertical
integration. The plant, situated inside SAIF calls for an investment of AED 60 million (($16.3million) and is the most advanced such facility in the UAE. With an initial capacity of 30 million cans per month, the unit will provide complete packing solutions to Delta Food in terms of cans, PET bottles and tetra packs. The charismatic CEO, Mr. Anand, brings to Delta Food a lot more than just his vast experience in design and technology. It is of little doubt that Delta Food will capitalize on his marketing and advertising acumen as well, in the near future.

UAE’s geographical position is a definite advantage when it comes to accessing markets in Asia, Africa and Europe. With plans to invest close to 11 million dollars to expand their markets in Africa, Delta Food is giving a major impetus to the growth of the FMCG sector there. With focus on Kenya, Democratic Republic of Congo, Angola and Nigeria the volume of trade is expected to increase exponentially. The Chairman, Mr. Osman also revealed that Delta Food is in negotiations with local companies in Uganda, Tanzania and Sudan.

“We value our relationship with our customers more than business. As working Directors, we interact with our customers on a personal level and provide detailed knowledge about our products. Delta always welcomes suggestion from customers. The strength of our order books is a clear indication of the confidence our customers have entrusted upon us,” concludes the Chairman, Mr. Shiraz Osman.

Melwin Joy
AUTHOR

Melwin Joy

All stories by: Melwin Joy