The world's largest indoor farm will be built in Abu Dhabi by a joint venture of firms from the Netherlands and the UAE. The AED650m ($177m) project will be developed by the Netherlands-based indoor farming specialist GrowGroup IFS and Abu Dhabi-based entrepreneurial catalyst RainMakers Capital Investment, jointly known as GreenFactory Emirates.
The indoor farm will be a combination of vertical and flat farming, capable of producing up to 10,000 tonnes of fresh food annually on a plot of 17.5 hectares and a cultivation area of 160,000 square metres.
The first phase of the farm will be operational before Expo 2020 Dubai in October 2021, where the Netherlands pavilion will be highlighting Dutch innovation in the water, energy and food sectors.
"The UAE is applying concerted efforts to improve its domestic production of food, with agricultural technology – ‘AgTech’ - having a hugely important role to play," said UAE Minister of State for Food Security Mariam Hareb Almheiri in an official statement.
"In fact, key targets of the government’s National Food Security strategy launched in November 2018 are to generate a 30 per cent yield improvement from technology-enabled production and for the UAE to become a world-leading hub in innovation-driven food security by 2051. Indoor farms such as GreenFactory Emirates are instrumental in helping us reach these goals."