Bottling success — shift toward locally produced drinks in Saudi Arabia

Bottling success — shift toward locally produced drinks in Saudi Arabia
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Kinza has a spacious booth at SFS where they are showcasing their latest and original flavors. (AN Photo: Abdulrahman Bin Shalhoub)
Bottling success — shift toward locally produced drinks in Saudi Arabia
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SFS features over 1000 exhibitors from 97 countries, making it a truly international showcase of food and beverage products and services. (AN Photo: Abdulrahman Bin Shalhoub)
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Updated 22 May 2024
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Bottling success — shift toward locally produced drinks in Saudi Arabia

Bottling success — shift toward locally produced drinks in Saudi Arabia
  • The event features more than 1,000 exhibitors from 97 countries
  • Kinza beverages are also available in Jordan, Sudan, Libya, Tanzania and Senegal

RIYADH: Consumers in Saudi Arabia are moving away from traditional staple soda drinks toward locally produced, high-quality alternatives, says CEO of Kinza Drinks Bandar Okrin.

At the second Saudi Food Show, Okrin told Arab News: “As more people continue to embrace these alternatives, the beverage industry in Saudi Arabia is experiencing a renaissance, with innovation and quality at the forefront.”

The event features more than 1,000 exhibitors from 97 countries, making it a truly international showcase of food and beverage products and services. Held at the Riyadh Front Exhibition & Conference Center, the three-day event ends on May 23.

The Saudi brand has returned this year as the “category beverage sponsor.” Okrin added that its presence as a sponsor fostered a sense of pride and support for local businesses.

Al-Jameel International, a Saudi company that recognized the shift toward locally produced drinks in 2022, introduced Kinza, a carbonated beverage that has quickly gained popularity among locals.

According to the SFS, the Saudi food and beverage sector is projected to experience substantial growth, with an expected annual growth rate of 3.44 percent, set to reach $27.83 billion by 2029.

This places Saudi Arabia as an attractive hub for both local and international players in the F&B sector looking for new prospects.

“We (at Kinza) are determined to shake up the beverage industry that a few large multinational companies have dominated for far too long,” Okrin said. “We currently have a strong presence in all GCC countries: Oman, Bahrain, Qatar, UAE and Kuwait.”

Kinza beverages are also available in Jordan, Sudan, Libya, Tanzania and Senegal.

The company’s goal is to establish a strong market presence and become a household name in global markets, with innovative beverage products that cater to a variety of tastes and preferences.

Okrin said that they aim to establish a strong market presence and brand recognition in these regions by effectively distributing products and building relationships with key stakeholders.

Their booth at SFS showcases their range of flavors, including cola, lemon, citrus and orange. “This year, we introduced new flavors like pomegranate, berries, Saudi cocktail, and carbonated water,” Okrin said.

Last week, Kinza launched diet cola and zero lemon options. “These new varieties will be available in all designated stores within the next two weeks,” he said.

Kinza is part of the Made in Saudi Program that unites ministries, government agencies and the private sector in support of Saudi national products under a single brand, which will contribute to the Kingdom’s economic growth and the realization of Vision 2030.


AlUla forges ahead with prestigious accreditation award

AlUla forges ahead with prestigious accreditation award
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AlUla forges ahead with prestigious accreditation award

AlUla forges ahead with prestigious accreditation award
  • Process required satisfying more than 100 performance standards

ALULA, Saudi Arabia: AlUla, with its seamless blend of ancient and modern, has been awarded a prestigious internationally recognized accreditation.

The oasis city has achieved a remarkable milestone by becoming the first destination in the Middle East to be accredited by Destinations International; the USA based global association for destination professionals, as officially announced today at the Destinations International Annual Convention in Florida.

The accreditation falls under the Destination Marketing Accreditation Programme (DMAP), an industry standard for quality and professionalism among destination organizations and comes a year after AlUla made history by becoming the first member of Destinations International from the Middle East.

Supported by a calendar of year-round events and authentic hospitality options, AlUla is as one of Saudi Arabia’s main tourism sites and has been operational and open to global tourists for four years. The latest accreditation is testament to AlUla’s vision and mission to spark a new wave of tourism excellence globally, centered around creating a sustainable, community-oriented experience economy.

Phillip Jones, Chief Tourism Officer at the Royal Commission for AlUla, said: “Completing the Destination Marketing Accreditation Programme is a significant milestone for AlUla as we strive to develop a tourism industry and eco-system that is best-in-class and future-thinking. This recognition strengthens our commitment to ensuring the highest standards within our destination, and establishing trust among visitors, community, stakeholders and our partners. By being part of Destinations International, an incubator for best practices, we hope to share our unique methodology with the world and showcase just why AlUla is one of the most innovative and coveted luxury destination in the world right now.”

To receive DMAP accreditation, a destination organization must satisfy more than 100 performance standards in domains including governance, financial management, human resources, sales and marketing, stakeholder engagement and destination development. The standards are set by an independent panel of industry veterans representing a range of destination organizations. Standards are updated regularly to reflect the evolution of best practices in the industry.

For AlUla, this latest recognition adds to several recent accolades. In May, the 2024 World Travel Awards honored AlUla as Middle East’s Leading Festival & Event Destination, Saudi Arabia’s Leading Cultural Tourism Project and Middle East’s Leading Cultural Tourism Project. Also in May, RCU received a five-star rating for organizational excellence from the European Foundation for Quality Management and an award of excellence from the Middle East Facility Management Association.

With its bevy of regional and global accolades, AlUla continues to solidify its status as a leading luxury boutique heritage destination, where travelers can deeply connect with arts and culture, natural beauty, holistic wellness, and thrilling adventure.

To learn more about AlUla, visit experiencealula.com.


RSG partners with Saudi Climbing and Hiking Federation to boost adventure tourism

RSG partners with Saudi Climbing and Hiking Federation to boost adventure tourism
Updated 17 July 2024
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RSG partners with Saudi Climbing and Hiking Federation to boost adventure tourism

RSG partners with Saudi Climbing and Hiking Federation to boost adventure tourism
  • Collaboration is set to revolutionize the tourism landscape by offering thrilling experiences while prioritizing safety and professionalism
  • Partnership will be spearheaded by Akun, RSG’s adventure sports brand, responsible for overseeing all hiking, climbing, and adventure experiences within RSG’s destinations

JEDDAH: Red Sea Global has recently announced a partnership with the Saudi Climbing and Hiking Federation aimed at enhancing adventure tourism activities across the Red Sea region.

According to the statement, this collaboration is set to revolutionize the tourism landscape by offering thrilling experiences while prioritizing safety and professionalism.

The partnership will be spearheaded by Akun, RSG’s adventure sports brand responsible for overseeing all hiking, climbing, and adventure experiences within RSG’s destinations, including The Red Sea and AMAALA.

Nicholas King, group chief development officer at Red Sea Global, emphasized the importance of combining adventure with luxury tourism, stating in a press release: “Our partnership with the Saudi Climbing and Hiking Federation is ensuring that Akun can offer invigorating experiences that complement the elegance of our resorts in a safe and professional manner. Together, we are propelling the adventure tourism industry across the Red Sea region.”

Through this collaboration, trainees from SCHF will have the opportunity to gain experience through internships with Akun, while also benefiting from training and support provided by qualified SCHF trainers.

Yasmin Gahtani, managing director at SCHF, highlighted the landscapes of Saudi Arabia’s Red Sea coast and expressed the desire to showcase these stunning terrains through climbing and hiking experiences.

She said: “Saudi Arabia has some of the world’s most stunning landscapes, especially along the Red Sea coast. We want to help Saudis and the world discover this dramatic terrain by opening it to exhilarating, yet safe, climbing and hiking experiences. Through this partnership, we can make Saudi and the Red Sea a must-visit destination for the most avid climbers, hikers, and thrill-seekers.”

To promote the Red Sea region as a premier adventure destination, RSG and SCHF plan to host a series of local, regional, and international events, including climbing competitions, hiking events, and festivals.

According to the statement, the federation’s technical and safety assessments will help certify RSG’s developments as world-class adventure destinations.

Looking ahead, RSG and SCHF are exploring the creation of hiking and climbing content tailored to the Red Sea region. This resource will offer valuable information on trails, climbing sites, logistical details, and safety guidelines, positioning the Red Sea as a premier hub for outdoor enthusiasts worldwide.


Training for budding nuclear engineers launched in Saudi Arabia

Training for budding nuclear engineers launched in Saudi Arabia
Updated 17 July 2024
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Training for budding nuclear engineers launched in Saudi Arabia

Training for budding nuclear engineers launched in Saudi Arabia
  • Eight-week program will be held partly in Saudi Arabia and later at the Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute in South Korea

RIYADH: The Kingdom has launched a summer training program for aspiring nuclear engineers, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Wednesday.

The initiative, spearheaded by the King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy and King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, targets undergraduate nuclear engineering students.

According to the SPA, the eight-week program will be held partly in Saudi Arabia and later at the Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute in South Korea.

The curriculum includes lectures and practical experiments, in addition to visits to nuclear facilities and reactors in South Korea.

According to the SPA, the initiative is a part of the Kingdom’s plan to develop an educated workforce for its nuclear energy industry.


Saudi crown prince congratulates Iran’s President Pezeshkian on his election win

Saudi crown prince congratulates Iran’s President Pezeshkian on his election win
Updated 17 July 2024
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Saudi crown prince congratulates Iran’s President Pezeshkian on his election win

Saudi crown prince congratulates Iran’s President Pezeshkian on his election win

RIYADH: Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has congratulated Iranian President Masoud Pezeshkian on his victory in the presidential elections, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Wednesday. 

During a phone call, the crown prince and the Iranian president praised the “development of bilateral relations between the two countries on several levels, stressing the importance of continuing to enhance cooperation in various fields,” SPA added.

The Iranian president expressed his thanks and appreciation to the crown prince for his good feelings.


Saudi Arabia offers condolences to families of victims in Oman shooting

Saudi Arabia offers condolences to families of victims in Oman shooting
Updated 17 July 2024
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Saudi Arabia offers condolences to families of victims in Oman shooting

Saudi Arabia offers condolences to families of victims in Oman shooting

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia has expressed its condolences to the families of the victims of Monday’s shooting in Oman that left several people dead and a number injured.

The Kingdom’s Foreign Ministry, in a statement on Wednesday on X, condemned the perpetrators involved in the shooting in Wadi Al-Kabir, Muscat.

The ministry praised the Omani authorities for their swift handling of the situation.

Also on Wednesday, in a statement carried by the Saudi Press Agency, GCC Secretary-General Jassim Al-Badawi said that the “heinous criminal act contradicts all the principles of our true religion and human and moral values.”

He said the GCC would support Oman’s security forces to deal with the incident.

Earlier, Omani police issued a statement that said Monday's shooting had resulted in the death of at least six individuals, which includes one policeman and three perpetrators.

At least 30 foreigners were wounded and have been hospitalized, according to reports.

The Pakistani Embassy in Oman, in a statement on X on Tuesday, said the country “strongly condemns the dastardly terrorist attack” which had resulted in the death of two citizens.

“We are heartened that the government of Oman has neutralized the attackers,” Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry added in a statement.

The UAE’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemned the attack, in a statement carried by the Emirates News Agency on Tuesday.

Daesh claimed responsibility for the attack, in a statement on Telegram on Tuesday.