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Global Forum for Innovations in Agriculture a game-changer or sustainable farming

Global Forum for Innovations in Agriculture a game-changer or sustainable farming

29.03.2017: Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority partnership sees hundreds of scientists, farmers, innovators, investors in UAE for agricultural discussions

Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority partnership sees hundreds of scientists, farmers, innovators, investors in UAE for agricultural discussions




Caption:    The Global Forum for Innovations in Agriculture has been hailed a game-changer in the development of sustainable farming in the Middle East



The organisers of the Global Forum for Innovations in Agriculture (GFIA) have hailed the fourth edition an unmitigated success and a game-changer in the development of sustainable farming across the GCC and wider Middle East.



Thousands of farm owners, government officials, international and regional agricultural scientists, innovators and investors attended the event held at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (20-21 March) to explore more than 300 solutions showcased by exhibitors and attend high level conference sessions, panel discussions, workshops, innovation presentations  and technical tours.



Held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister of the UAE, Minister of Presidential Affairs and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority, the GFIA conference featured speakers from around the world tackling five key challenges: climate-resilient crops; growing the aquaculture industry; future-proofing animal health; smallholder farmer development; and sustainable animal production. 



The much anticipated two-day event, which attracted over 5,900 participants from over 80 countries, acts as an international platform for a debate over global food security and water scarcity – two major issues the world faces today.



Thamer Al Qasemi, Director of the Communication and Community Service Division at ADFCA, said: “Our unique Hosted Programmes for both farmers and scientists were platforms for game-changing discussions in our ongoing efforts to take the most innovative ideas from the research lab to the fields. 



“The GFIA is one of the few events in the world to present solutions and inspire debate across all types of food production and we have been very pleased with the results and discussions that have taken place here in Abu Dhabi.”



Before the event had opened more than 1,000 meetings had been pre-booked between exhibitors and visitors. With more than 80% of exhibitors stating they were satisfied, the event this year drew strong support internationally. 



Ocean Harvest from Ireland, Arvo Tec and EverGreen Farm Oy from Finland, Ponix Systems in Austria, Beijing Kingpen from China and AgriLife from India all did significant business at the event and have all re-booked to exhibit in 2018 alongside a host of homegrown UAE companies including Emirates Future, Radoom Agriculture Establishment and Stud Pac.


More than 50 innovative solutions were presented across the two day event to support more productive food production across the crop, livestock, aquaculture and horticulture industries. 



ADFCA innovations included sustainable beekeeping in the UAE, fruit plantation (technologies and operations) and climate control in highly technical agricultural nurseries. 





Five innovations published by UAE University were: a customised soil and irrigation monitoring system; recognition of plant diseases using smart photo processing; extracting organic antibiotics from dates; deep irrigation study for palm trees; and technologies to increase local citrus trees.



They covered diverse topics such as mitigating enteric methane production from ruminant animals, the early detection of the red palm weevil, how to sustainably produce food in urban areas, aquasourcing to retain and absorb moisture, taking advantage of fully sustainable indoor growing systems, sustainable beekeepers in the UAE, and developing the internet for farmers without the internet.



Dutch firm Solynta presented their breakthrough findings which have unlocked the tremendous potential of potatoes – 25 gram pristine true seeds which accurately, predictably and quickly breed new varieties with durable disease resistance, increased yield and are resilient to climate change.



In Ovo has developed a device which will stop the killing of 3.2 billion male chicks every year; the technology is capable of gender typing the egg, instead of the chick, thus improving animal welfare as well as efficiency in the farming methods and tackling a major issue in poultry.



The Bagshan Bee Research Department from the King Saud University showcased their beehive system which has been designed with favourable conditions inside the beehive colony, suitable for local environmental conditions. 



Due to the high temperatures and dryness of the Middle East, beekeepers lose almost 70% of bees during the summer.  The new system uses 7 frames, locally produced, which will be fully equipped with humidity and temperature controllers to prevent bees from death in the colony.



Engender Technologies received positive feedback following their presentation on controlling the composition of a dairy herd.  The international animal breeding industry needs an affordable and effective sperm sex sorting product, and Engender has developed a proprietary process to separate X (female) and Y (male) bearing bull sperm cells, enabling dairy farmers to accelerate gain and improve productivity.



The day after the conclusion of the event, five technical site tours were arranged to give participants the opportunity to visit some of the best sustainable farming operations and businesses, as well as research and development facilities in the UAE. 



The tours took place at the Aquaponics Farm in Abu Dhabi, the Abu Dhabi Farmers’ Services Centre Model Farm, the Seawater Energy and Agricultural System and the International Centre for Biosaline Agriculture in Dubai.




- Lindsay Johnston, Total Communications Dubai - also photos

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/global-forum-innovations-agriculture-sustainable-farming---162505.html

29.03.2017 / MaP

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