Millennium Hotels and Resorts has partnered with Watermelon, a food and beverage procurement platform, to incorporate locally sourced produce across its hotels within the UAE.

Millennium says that the partnership aims to “revolutionise the way food is sourced, delivered, and consumed across its hotels in the UAE.”

By way of this collaboration, Millennium will, via Watermelon, source produce from local farmers, ensuring that the freshest and highest quality ingredients are used in its hotels.

Watermelon has a dedicated team that sources and partners with local farmers and fishermen in the UAE to offer a selection of fresh fruits, vegetables, seafood, and other home-grown ingredients through its platform.

The platform includes a growing network of more than 50 commercial farm companies representing more than 1,000 local farmers, including local farm companies such as Manbat.

The collaboration will launch within the Italian restaurant, Al Fresco, located at the Millennium Plaza Downtown in Dubai. As part of the initiative, the executive chef at Millennium Plaza Downtown, Christophe Prud’homme, will craft an exclusive menu using locally sourced produce.

Future plans involve launching a “Home Farm” style breakfast featuring a selection of nutritious local produce sourced from UAE farms.

Omar Al Shamsi, CEO of Watermelon, said, “We are excited to work with Chef Christophe to create these wonderful dishes that emphasise the local ingredients found right here in the UAE. In line with the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment’s National Farm Sustainability Initiative that supports local farmers we can foster a resilient and sustainable food system that benefits everyone.”

Fahad Abdulrahim Kazim, CEO of Millennium Hotels and Resorts MEA, added: “We are excited to embark on this food sustainability journey with Watermelon, a platform that provides access to thousands of local farmers in the UAE. Our partnership with Watermelon will demonstrate our commitment and support the creation of a more resilient and sustainable food system that nurtures local communities and celebrates the incredible flavors that the UAE has to offer.”

Millennium said that its ESG strategy involved establishing long-term relationships with the local community by supporting local small and medium-sized enterprises.

Chef Christophe of Al Fresco, executive chef at Millennium Plaza Downtown, added, “Growing up in a farm filled with fresh food around me, smelling and touching the fruits and vegetables as a young aspiring chef, today, my dream has came true. I am excited to work with the best of the seasonal UAE products, ranging from a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, and other produce being grown here in the UAE. Working closely with Watermelon, I can go back to the memories of my young self, enjoying the scents and seeing vegetables grown locally that I will soon prepare on my chef’s table at Alfresco restaurant.”

(Image: Supplied by Millennium Hotels and Resorts)