The Abu Dhabi Investment Office (ADIO) has recently signed cooperation agreements with AeroFarms, MadarFarms, RNZ, and RDI. They will successively establish new R & D and production facilities in the UAE. ADIO will invest USD 100 million in these four agricultural technology companies Committed to developing the next generation of agricultural industries in droughts and deserts to meet the challenges of complex global agriculture and solve local food production problems.
American-based AeroFarms is one of the most successful vertical agricultural companies in the world. It will build a new R & D center of 8,200 square meters in Abu Dhabi to meet the challenges of desert agriculture. The R & D center will become the largest indoor vertical farm of its kind in the world. It is expected to employ more than 60 senior engineers, horticulturists, and scientists to conduct cutting-edge research in the fields of plant science, vertical agriculture, and automation, accelerate the innovation cycle and commercialize products.
RDI is a startup company dedicated to the development of an innovative irrigation system. It uses organic chemistry-based technology to design a “smart” underground irrigation pipe that interacts with and reacts with chemical signals released by plant roots to make Crops can self-regulate the transport of water and nutrients, help plants grow in the harshest environments, to optimize agricultural water consumption, and research experiments to increase crop yields in sandy and non-cultivated land.
Madara Farms, a United Arab Emirates agricultural technology innovation company, will use LED lights to build a commercial-scale indoor tomato farm to verify the commercial and technical feasibility of controlled environmental agriculture (CEA) under the severe weather conditions in the UAE. The company will also start to expand the commercial scale of micro-green plants, provide locally with a consistent and traceable food supply, and make reasonable use of the region’s natural resources.
The UAE-based RNZ company has been providing customized solutions for the agricultural industry since 2004. It will establish a research and development center to develop various effective organic and inorganic agricultural investment solutions for vertical farms, hydroponics, and conventional farms.
Technology agriculture is one of the key areas of concern in Abu Dhabi. The desert climate, abundant sunlight, and land availability make Abu Dhabi the only choice for the development of high-tech agriculture suitable for desert environments. Abu Dhabi is constantly exploring solutions to complex global agricultural problems through innovation and R & D investment.
The investment in these four companies is part of the Ghadan 21 Accelerator Program set up by the UAE government in 2019 for a US $ 272 million technology and agriculture incentive program. Incentives include the return of up to 75% of R & D expenditure after the commercialization of new solutions developed in Abu Dhabi.
Put the vertical farm in a desert environment to replace the insufficient cultivated land there, which may be a real field test for the role of facility agriculture for our entire food system.
Note: The Emirate of Abu Dhabi is the largest emirate of the United Arab Emirates. In February 2018, it announced the establishment of the Abu Dhabi Investment Office (ADIO), which provides investors with relevant information, data and investment references, and is also responsible for domestic and overseas Promotion of Abu Dhabi’s investment environment.