On its home soil, Emirates also chooses to celebrate and support local suppliers, in a nod to its Emirati heritage and dedication to the development of the UAE. To highlight the best of the UAE to a global audience, Emirates partners with several homegrown businesses – from artisan producers, authors, and artists who proudly highlight their culture, to farm-fresh food suppliers to who place quality, community, and sustainability at the core of their operations.
Emirates and Coffee Planet
Emirates has partnered with UAE company Coffee Planet for the last decade, serving up to 17 tonnes of coffee worldwide every year, onboard flights to 140 destinations. Coffee Planet is a prime example of a homegrown UAE success story, an authority on coffee throughout the wider region since its inception in 2005. Coffee Planets’ mission was to bring specialty-grade 100% Arabica coffee beans to a wide consumer base, starting in their home region of the Arabian Peninsula which already has a rich coffee history dating back 500 years. Sourcing green beans from over 23 countries, Coffee Planet carefully roast and produce coffee beans and ground coffee, as well as manufacture bio-degradable capsules in Dubai.
Emirates selected Coffee Planet as a core supplier to support a local company, and now exposes the product to millions of passengers each year. Coffee Planet is served onboard all Emirates flights worldwide, in every travel class. Emirates also works with Coffee Planet to create bespoke drinks for special occasions like Christmas and Valentine’s Day, such as the rose-kissed mocha or orange crush latte. First Class passengers can also sample premium blends with notes of walnut and maple syrup, cocoa and black pepper or sip a classic iced Americano or affogato al café.
Emirates and Barakat
Founded in 1976, Barakat – meaning ‘blessings’ in Arabic, is a well-known fruit and vegetable specialist in the UAE. Barakat has been supplying Emirates with fresh juice blends since 2008, with a total of 344,000 litres of juice consumed on Emirates flights annually. The signature Emirates vitality juices are served in First and Business Class, as well as in First Class Emirates Lounges, beloved by passengers due to their refreshing taste and health benefits – they are gluten free, vegan, and packed with essential vitamins, minerals, fibre, and antioxidants, with no added sugar, additives, or preservatives. The juices are so fresh, they are only consumable for 3 days once refrigerated, the same as a juice squeezed at home. The genesis of Barakat dates to 1976 where it began in the trade of fruits and vegetables in the Al Hamriya market, Dubai.
Emirates and Emirati artists
Emirates inflight entertainment system ice has received multiple industry awards for its vast variety of content – a world class entertainment library with more than 5,000 channels of on-demand entertainment, over 1,700 movies and 1,500 hours of TV, live news, as well as music, podcasts, and audiobooks across forty-five languages. One staple on ice is Emirati content directly from the UAE, including ‘My Story,’ a docudrama series inspired by HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s book of the same name, and a collection of historical proverbs and adages from the UAE, entitled Al Mtwassf. Emirati movies on ice include Social Man, B82, Kart Ahmar, Al Kameen, Uncle Naji, Chromosome and From A to B. Podcast lovers can immerse themselves in poetry and literary works from the region including Fazza – Qassed Fazza – poems written by HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, or Al San’a, a podcast by Abdulla Hamdan bin Dalmook, that sheds light on the daily life and traditional etiquette of the people of the UAE. For the musically minded, ice has plenty of songs and compositions from the UAE, including Emirati artists Abdul Menaem Al Ameri, Hussain Aljassmi, Hazza’ah Al Minhali, Fayez Al Saeed, Omar Al Marzooqi and Balqees.
Emirates and Munch & Crunch
For the last 7 years, Emirates has partnered with Emirati-owned artisan manufacturer, Munch & Crunch to supply Arabic sweets and Arabic savoury products, for customers in Emirates First and Business Class Lounges worldwide. Within one year, Emirates orders one million assorted Munch and Crunch products for use in lounges. The delicious signature products include traditional handmade Arabian sweets, roasted nuts, dates, exotic dried fruits, petits fours, soft nougat, cinnamon-roasted nuts, and honey-coated nuts. Munch & Crunch is led by Emirati entrepreneur, Mariam Al Shamsi, who ensures all Munch & Crunch products represent the unique culinary flavours of the UAE.
Emirates and Farm Fresh
Farm Fresh is a division of UAE family-owned company GMG. Founded by Chairman Abul Aziz Baker and Mohammad Baker, Deputy Chairman and CEO, Farm Fresh have been supplying fresh eggs and chicken to Emirates for 20 years. On average, Emirates requires almost 300 tonnes of chicken per year and more than 300,000 eggs. Starting its journey as a small butchery shop in early 1970’s for high quality European meat, Farm Fresh has grown into a leading distributor of some of the world’s best loved food brands. With a dedicated approach to sustainability, GMG factories use solar power and refrain from using any single-use plastic.
Emirates and Lime Tree Café
Emirates has partnered with Lime Tree Café since 2015. Lime Tree Café is a boutique bakery, which is certified as gluten-free – the first bakery in Dubai to receive this accreditation in 2012. Lime Tree Café provides a range of freshly baked gluten-free treats for Emirates First and Business Class passengers, and Emirates orders 78,000 varied pieces on average each year. Passengers can choose from sumptuous and healthy treats like salted caramel cakes, custard cocoa slices, indulgent cheesecake, and cookies. Lime Tree Café gluten free products are reimagined from tried and tested family recipes, and everything is baked from scratch daily by dedicated bakers. Ingredients are of the highest quality, traceable to source, and organic where possible, avoiding pesticides and preservatives, additives, or genetically modified ingredients. Lime Tree Café is also invested in the environment, and all items supplied to Emirates are in biodegradable packaging and recyclable materials.
Emirates and Mirak
Emirates partners with Mirak to service a vast catering requirement for fresh fruit and vegetables, to be prepared for inflight meals – on average 1800 tonnes annually. Emirates has a particularly high requirement for freshly farmed mushrooms, potatoes, bananas, and strawberries for inflight cuisine. Promising ‘the best of nature,’ Mirak imports and distributes over 90,000 tonnes annually of fresh fruit and vegetables to its clients. Named after its founder Mir Abdulla Khoory, Mirak was established in 1983 as a family-owned company and has a long history as one of the region’s pioneering innovators in agricultural production. Mirak is also committed to environmental sustainability, with a focus on energy conservation and waste management.
Emirates and Community Events
With a manifesto of bringing the world together through sports, arts and culture, Emirates has initiated multiple events that enhance and connect the local community, beginning with the first powerboat race held in Dubai in 1987. Now Emirates sponsors some of Dubai’s best loved family festivals and sporting events, including the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature in partnership with the Dubai Culture and Arts Authority – the Middle East’s largest celebration of the written and spoken word. Promoting education, debate and reading, the festival has won numerous awards its family appeal and positive impact on the community.
Emirates is also the title sponsor of Dubai World Cup – one of the world’s top horse-racing challenges that welcomes over 80,000 guests to the event annually, the DP World Tour Golf Championship in Dubai – which is the grand finale of a season-long competition spanning 44 tournaments in 28 countries, and the Dubai Tennis Championships, which Emirates has supported since it began in 1993.
Emirates also sponsors another huge sporting event in the Dubai calendar, the Emirates Dubai Sevens. With a 52-year history, bringing some 5,500 athletes from 32 countries and more than 100,000 spectators through the gates, the event this year features more than 300 teams playing rugby matches, netball, cricket, and fitness, alongside world renowned headline music acts and family attractions. The Sevens Stadium also has the regions first and largest solar carport at a sporting facility, which generates sufficient clean energy to power most of the stadium’s operations throughout the year.