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How Can The Fmcg Industry Gain A Competitive Edge During Crisis?

#UAE | 29 July, 2021

The last two years have been a unique time for almost everyone and every country in the world. We all witnessed the outbreak of Coronavirus that no one saw coming. It brought about many challenges, economical and financial losses, and other issues in many countries, including the UAE. Many businesses had to go through financial losses and had to revamp themselves in order to overcome the resulting obstacles, like economic downturn and supply chain disruptions. One of the industries that were severely affected by this is the FMCG industry.

As one of the leading food and beverage distributors in the UAE, we can confidently say that we managed to not only overcome the obstacles with immediate risk mitigation measures and operational changes but also managed to gain a competitive edge. Many food distributors in the UAE had to modify their marketing strategies and operations in order to adapt to the new normal.

There were various challenges for the FMCG industry after the outbreak. As people stayed indoors due to social distancing, many people started taking up new hobbies, one of which was cooking. Many people started learning how to cook in the pandemic, which led us to understand that people would rather cook food than order, so we marketed the concept of making healthier dishes with healthier ingredients. We highlighted and marketed our products that are supposed to be healthier ingredients for cooking, like gluten-free products, cholesterol-free Mayo, and healthy cooking oil.

People who did not want to cook were either going for take-aways or eating canned or frozen goods. So, we ensured that the increasing demand for canned or frozen food items, long-life milk, and other household items was met by the increased supply. FMCG industries in the UAE couldn't source products from several countries due to lockdown restrictions, so the focus on local food production or local suppliers increased significantly.

Organic food service distributors in the UAE also hired more people to make sure all the food parcels are delivered on time, without any inconvenience. People looked for tags like 100% natural, organic, and healthy on the packaging of their food products because they started looking for healthier products. They are now more concerned about their health and more responsible towards the environment. So, we marketed our healthy products and introduced new product categories, to diversify our offerings, including products like easy, quick treats and products that protect you from germs. Basically, anything that would contribute to their healthy lifestyle and would encourage them to keep it going was marketed or highlighted.

The concept of opting for a healthy lifestyle was also paid a lot of attention to, as it was also the right path to take and we, at Al Maya trading, took immense pride in delivering what people wanted.

There is no doubt that businesses face numerous challenges during a crisis like COVID-19. However, what separates successful businesses from struggling ones is their ability to implement the measures required to deal with the crisis positively. In the FMCG manufacturing industries, there are several ways to drive long-term usage and enhance sales growth during such times.

  • One way to do this is by promoting products that go well with people's current lifestyles. This means that businesses need to identify what people need during a crisis and offer innovative products that meet those needs. For example, during the COVID-19 pandemic, people started spending more time at home, and their eating habits changed. Therefore, FMCG companies in Dubai that offered healthy snack options or easy-to-cook meals suitable for home consumption saw an increase in demand. By identifying such trends and offering relevant products, businesses can tap into new markets and increase their sales.

  • Another way to drive long-term usage and enhance sales growth in the leading FMCG companies in Dubai is by acquiring new customers through the introduction of new categories. This means businesses can explore new product categories or expand their product range to attract new customers. For example, a beverage company can introduce a new range of health drinks to attract health-conscious customers. By diversifying their product range, businesses can increase their customer base and drive long-term sales growth.

  • Finally, businesses can focus on local retailers and products to drive sales growth during a crisis. With restrictions on movement and transportation, people tend to shop locally, and businesses can take advantage of this trend. FMCG manufacturers can work with local retailers to offer their products to consumers in the area. This not only helps businesses reach new customers but also supports the local economy.


All it takes is just a little bit of patience and thorough planning to come up with risk mitigation strategies that can help you to overcome obstacles resulting from a crisis. So, it is always good to be equipped to implement sudden changes in your operations, if you are running a food business. The implemented solutions still continue to impact the lifestyle of people in the UAE. They're more aware of what they are eating and they are healthier than ever before. What has majorly changed is the way people consume. People are way more responsible now in terms of what they are eating and more consistent when it comes to living a healthy lifestyle.

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