Dubai Plans New Park for Food Firms in Vertical Farming Push

Dubai will build a new business park to host specialized agricultural firms as the Middle East’s business hub pushes for food security.

The first phase of the project, dubbed “Food Tech Valley,” will include headquarters, research and development facilities, innovation center, smart food logistics hub and areas for vertical farming, according to a tweet by Dubai’s ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid.

Dubai, a desert city that needs to import nearly all its food, has been seeking to secure food supplies along with other sheikdoms in the United Arab Emirates federation. A global surge in food prices and the disruption to supply chains caused by the pandemic pushed the country to accelerate plans to grow more crops and farm more livestock. The oil-rich UAE currently imports about 90% of its food needs.

“The UAE’s food trade exceeds 100 billion ($27 billion) annually,” the Dubai’s ruler, who’s also prime minister of the UAE, said in the tweet. “Our country is a global food logistics hub, and we will work to create a nurturing environment for agribusinesses to develop new farming technologies and enhance our future food security.”

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