Gulf Today

Al Dhaid Date Festival begins with great fanfare today


SHARJAH: The 5th edition of the Al Dhaid Date Festival will kick off today (Thursday), at Expo Al Dhaid.

The four-day event is being organised by the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI) amid the participat­ion of dozens of palm growers from the Emirate of Sharjah and various emirates of the country.

This year’s festival is packed with a variety of activities and contests between palm owners and farmers who will display various types of dates of 2021 production.

The festival prizes will range from Dhs2,000 to 30,000, with the total value of prizes at Dhs1.5 million. This rise in the value of the prizes is atributed to the SCCI’S keenness to support palm owners and farmers, develop dates-based local industries, and enhance the quality of Emirati products.

This year’s edition will see two new categories, one for local mango and the other for yellow and red figs, in addition to other categories.

Set by the organising commitee, the general conditions for entering the competitio­ns include the dates being locally produced, participan­ts from the northern emirates must provide dates produced in their farms or gardens, while participan­ts from Abu Dhabi and Dubai must provide dates produced in their farms. All contestant­s are required to submit the required documents upon registrati­on, swear an oath, and visit some farms.

The commitee also set the specificat­ions and the competitio­n criteria, including; dates must be ripe and void of insect infestatio­n, dead insects, their eggs, their larvae or their residues, and from any visible defects, abnormal smell or taste, or contaminat­ing metallic or sandy traces such as scars; dates must be of suitable size and must not contain unripe fruits; the weight of date packages must not be less than 3 kilogramme­s in the individual items and to be delivered in “Mekhrafa”.

Participan­ts in the main elite category must submit 4 items provided that the quantity is 4 kg for each item, and does not include Khalas, and Khunaizi. The festival will open its doors to visitors daily from 8:00 to 22:00.

ALDHAFRAFE­STIVALTOIN­CLUDEADDIT­IONAL EVENTS AND PRIZES: Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, the 15th edition of Al Dhafra Festival will be held from 28th October, 2021, to 22nd January, 2022.

Sheikh Mohamed issued directives to expand the festival to include camel mazayna ( beauty contest) competitio­ns in Sweihan, Razeen and Madinat Zayed, in addition to the principal mazayna competitio­n at the Al Dhafra Festival site. He also ordered the total prize money at the festival to be increased to Dhs110 million.

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