Red Sea launches operations at one hectare greenhouse facility

The showcase facility is set to supercharge wider adoption of the technologies in the UAE

RedSea has announced the commissioning and start of operations at its new greenhouse facility in Abu Dhabi, UAE. The AgTech firm said the greenhouse facility is powered by 2,000sqm of elevated solar panels functioning as agrivoltaics, with protected crops grown under the panels and heat-blocking net – showcasing the full capability of RedSea’s sustainable technologies.

According to a statement, the technology in the new Abu Dhabi facility – a first for the country – will help diversify food product sources and stimulate the region’s agri-food sectors. It added that the commissioning is a first look for UAE audiences at RedSea’s sustainable agricultural technologies.

The one-hectare showcase facility is set to supercharge wider adoption of the technologies in the UAE for the benefit of local growers and significantly impact Abu Dhabi’s agricultural ecosystem. RedSea’s facility directly compares, side-by-side, its roots to roof technologies with technologies currently  used in the GCC, the statement continued.

“We are delighted for UAE audiences to have their first glimpse of our award-winning technology, which is transforming global controlled environment agriculture and open-field farming. There is a clear path for local growers to use this technology to generate higher production yields, operate more sustainably and be more profitable,” said Red Sea CEO Ryan Lefers.

In late August 2022, Group AMANA said it delivered the world’s largest vertical farm in Dubai South and, in early February 2023, PIF & AeroFarms signed a deal to develop vertical farms across the MENA region.

Its technologies include iyris heat-blocking low-cost roofing, a climate-controlled recirculating deep water culture system for growth of berries, and a saltwater evaporative cooling system functioning without desalination. RedSea’s climate-adapted IoT sensors – which allow remote monitoring and greenhouse management – will serve as the management system. The project received HSBC’s Living Business award for innovative water management and efficiency, the statement pointed out.

RedSea’s focus on resource and food scarcity supports the UAE’s ‘National Food Security Strategy’ to promote food security with advanced agricultural technology. With climate change and increasing global food shortages, the UAE and the Middle East are leading the way in addressing these huge issues ahead of COP 28, the company said.

Lefers remarked, “Globally, food production is frequently unsustainable and very vulnerable to climate change. Our technology – which addresses these problems directly – is a solution born in the deserts of the Middle East and already being delivered in hot climates around the world.”

Miles Thornhill, Team Head Corporate Banking and Head of Business Banking UAE at HSBC concluded, “We are focused on helping to deliver a Net Zero global economy, which includes channelling investment towards sustainable projects. Sustainable finance has an important role to play in allowing AgTech companies, such as RedSea, to scale and demonstrate solutions that help build a better future.”

In late February 2023, Sharjah Sustainable City launched the ‘Discover Your Urban Farm’ initiative.

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