Food Security in the UAE
The global agricultural community is fighting world hunger to create food security for the next generations. Lately, we’re seeing a lot of this effort focus on the UAE. As a greenhouse manufacturer and agriculture services provider ProFit Agro‘s mission has been to create and support local farms. We have always provided tailored solutions for each specific environment where we operate. We therefore know how challenging it can be to keep up with climate change, secure water availability and maintain energy efficiency.
This is the case in the new relations between the UAE and Israel. As soon as the treaties were signed, we saw a surge in orders ranging from government projects to completely private citizens looking for the latest and greatest Israeli agtech. “We’re seeing more and more companies offering solutions without understanding the kind of climate conditions in the UAE” says Amir Fox, Founder and Managing Director of ProFit Agro. Recognizing the trend Mr. Fox put together a team of industry experts to study first and produce fact-based solutions for the UAE market.
Here are some things we strongly suggest researching before diving into commercial farming in the UAE
- Know your market
What crops are already locally grown and why? In many cases the reason no one grows a certain crop is because no one in the region will eat it. Go to the supermarket, see what’s on the shelves, find out the wholesale prices, the quality requirements and demand. If you intend to produce for international export be sure to consider inflation and international relations between countries.
- Research your climate
With climate change on the rise, temperature, humidity, wind and solar radiation have a huge affect on crop quality, quantities and uniformity.
- Secure a plot of land with access to water, power, fuel and transportation
Infrastructure is a huge expense that many overlook. It affects the initial cost of your project and operational costs down the road.
- Test your water and soil
Many clients these days opt to grow hydroponically and assume they only need water tested; however soil is what your whole operation is built on. A soil analysis is crucial when designing structural loads and load bearing requirements.
- Hire the right outfit for the right projects
We often see irrigation companies trying to build greenhouses, engineering firms attempting to be agronomic experts and so on. While ProFit Agro employs a wide team of experts who know a lot. We know where our knowledge ends. There is no greater flaw than arrogance and our clients benefit greatly from our honest and humble approach.
- Hire a local crew for construction and operation of your facilities
While many projects will undoubtedly require outside help at first. It is equally important to train a local crew to both maintain and operate your project. We provide diligent knowledge transfer using a small team of Israeli experts for just this purpose.
Once you’ve checked off the list you may still be wondering: what now? Based on our research, here are a few generic crop covering solutions that we feel confident will succeed in the UAE climate and market.
RDWC (Recirculating Deep-Water Cultivation) for growing lettuce and leafy greens
Growing on ponds. With the growing demand for nutrient rich, high quality salads, investing in hydroponics is trending around the world. The main issue is that most greens arrive at the market having travelled thousands of kilometers. During these long jourenys they lose much of their nutritional value and freshness along the way. The versatility of the RDWC system enables it to operate virtually anywhere meaning produce is grown locally and delivered to market quickly. Besides being more sustainable this solution provides a uniform harvest year-round, high quality crops and a quick ROI (sometimes as quick as 1 year). It is also less susceptible to temperature fluctuation and Ec/Ph variations in the water and uses very little power and water in comparison to other hydroponic techniques. This maks it the most energy efficient solution available for growing lettuce and leafy greens.
Soilless cultivation for fruits and vegetables
We’ve developed several solutions for growing everything from melons to trellised vegetables in the UAE. With structures designed to bear the massive crop loads, irrigation and fertigation systems to ensure water is not wasted and the most energy efficient solution to maintain the correct microclimate throughout the year. Whether you wish to grow peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers or even melons, give us a call to see if we have a solution for you.
The PAC (Practical Agriculture Center)
The PAC is the ultimate knowledge transfer facility, providing agrotechnical training to local communities while performing as a working commercial farm. Each center is designed to meet the needs and the cultural norms of the community it serves. Our goal is providing the tools and technologies to make farming more efficient and nurture a new generation of farmers who can innovate, create and lead their country into a rich and prosperous agricultural future.
We at ProFit Agro encourage our staff to think outside the box, producing in-house innovations and cutting-edge designs that set us apart from the competition. By combining the most advanced technological breakthroughs with old-world methods, we can customize systems to meet even the most complex requirements. Our specialists are ready, willing and able to assist in the planning of any project from the ground up.