(MENAFN- Khaleej Times)
Published: Wed 30 Nov 2022, 4:48 PM
Last updated: Wed 30 Nov 2022, 10:50 PM
The Sharjah Ruler has sown seeds at a massive wheat farm in the Mleiha region. This marked the launch of the first phase of the project that covers 400 hectares. The harvest is likely to happen in four months.
The second phase of the project will see the area expanded to 880 hectares by 2024. By 2025, it will cover 1,400 hectares.
The infrastructure at the farm has been completed, with 13-metre irrigation lines set up. The irrigation process at the farm is powered by artificial intelligence. Information about the weather and soil is relayed to the main centre to help regulate water consumption.
His Highness Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, stressed the importance of the projects to ensure food security.
He highlighted how the UAE's annual wheat imports can be reduced thanks to the farm.
Here are some snaps of the Ruler and the massive farmland equipped with advanced technologies:
The Sharjah Ruler called on farmers to coordinate with Sharjah Government entities to develop their fields. He said they can avail of subsidies on electricity and water. Additionally, the government will offer technical and agricultural consultations to ensure the production of crops that are compatible with health standards and are free of harmful chemicals.
Food security is among the top priorities for the UAE government. Several innovative projects have been launched to boost food production in the emirates.
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Earlier this year, the world's largest hydroponic farm (a method of farming that does not use soil) opened in Dubai. Bustanica is a 330,000 sqft facility that produces more than 1 million kg of high-quality leafy greens annually, while requiring 95 per cent less water than conventional agriculture.
The UAE is also home to one of the largest indoor vertical farms growing saffron in the Mena region. Located in the Veggitech facility in Al Zubair, Sharjah, the state-of-the-art vertical farm is set to produce high-yielding, high-grade quality of saffron.
The International Centre for Biosaline Agriculture farm on Dubai-Al Ain Road has made some groundbreaking research in cultivating local varieties of crops that are heat-resistant and can grow in salty water
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