In recent years, the food industry has experienced a transformation. Once regarded as the most common (and profitable) items, sugary beverages and snacks have lost the limelight. Consumers now want healthy products that are all “natural” and “organic” with the ingredient list displayed prominently on packaging. Plant-based eating is a trend that is here to stay. Consumer demand has driven the move towards healthier products, and the food industry has been quick to respond with a niche brand offering quality organic dates. Rooted in Arab culture and hospitality since 1936, Bateel is the only gourmet date producer and seller in the world to enjoy an unprecedented legacy.
Dates are sweet fruits of the date palm tree, known as Phoenix dactylifera scientifically. Mainly consumed as a dried fruit, dates are rich in various nutrients, fibre, and antioxidants providing a number of health benefits. Bateel’s organic date farms are situated in a fertile oasis in the Al Ghat region of Saudi Arabia. Over 100,000 date palm trees grown here in the historic green valley of the Tuwayq Mountains.This unique terrain, along with the temperate climate and naturally flowing sweet water for irrigation, lends to the inimitable taste of every Bateel date.
From Tree to Client Concept
The farming methods utilised by Bateel are held as close to nature as possible to ensure high quality produce. Date palm trees can live for a 100-year period producing up to 150 kg of fruit per year. Bateel follows a comprehensive technique of farming where pollination of these trees occurs with the help of human assistance. The roots are kept free from grass and weeds, and a tiny trench is dug around the base of the tree in an agricultural setting. Then this trench is filled with water so that the roots can absorb it. When the fruit starts to develop, the agricultural workers remove a big proportion from it, so that the remainder can grow into larger sizes by obtaining more nutrition from the tree. As they start to mature, maturing dates are wrapped in well ventilated cloth to prevent birds and insects, which also helps prevent the use of pesticides.
After being harvested by hand in Saudi Arabia, they are immediately stored to stop further maturation and lock in flavours. The fruit is then cleaned using state-of-the-art technology before being evaluated and graded to meet strict standards for size, colour, translucency and skin condition requirements. The dates are then transferred to Bateel’s world-class production plant in Dubai, UAE, where a team of devoted artisans prepare and stuff dates with premium nuts, candied fruits and chocolate filling. Dates being quite delicate fruits, the highly skilled craft of stuffing dates is done manually.
Healthy Edible Luxury
More than 2800 tons of organic dates are harvested every year by Bateel. Bateel offers over 20 premium organic date varieties to choose from, including its own world exclusive Wanan range. Like the word ‘Bateel’ itself – which relates to the young offshoot of a date palm that can be used to develop into a fresh tree – the company continues to foray further in culinary arts. As a pioneer in the gourmet date industry, Bateel has evolved into a leader in the international luxury food sector. It has its presence in 10 countries with 32 boutiques and 26 cafes.