iFarm, a vertical farming technologies provider, announced the launch of the first vertical farm in the UAE to use iFarm technologies.
Located in Dubai, the farm will produce “ultra-fresh” produce such as leafy greens, microgreens, herbs and edible flowers. Its initial target markets are premium retail and hotel, restaurant, catering sectors.
Located just a 30-minute drive from the heart of Dubai, the vertical farm covers a growing area of 712 sq m and is expected to yield around 3 tonnes of high-quality produce per month. The farm will operate under the Mama Natura Greens brand.
The farm in Dubai is the first in the world to use the new iFarm Multigreens technology. It is designed for both microgreens and full-cycle greens cultivation in a shared growing space using the Ebb & Flow irrigation method.
The advantages of flexible zoning allows for redistributing areas among different crops: microgreens, baby leaves, and leafy greens, depending on the current market demand, business goals, and seasonality.
The yield grown on the farm in Dubai will be supplied to restaurants, hotels, and resorts in Dubai, as well as to retail chains such as Spinneys, Geant, Grandiose and Carrefour for further sale.
Alexander Lyskovsky, CEO of iFarm, says: “Nearly a year ago, iFarm moved its headquarters to Abu Dhabi. Since then, there have been two fully operational farms built with iFarm technologies in the GCC region: Bather Smart Farm in Saudi Arabia and the newly launched Multigreens farm in the UAE.
“The Emirates has established itself as a thriving Food & Beverage hub where the consumption of ultra-fresh greens and herbs has grown significantly over the last years.
“Consumers are willing to pay more for the quality, taste, and safety of food. Currently, we are negotiating the supply of vertical farming equipment to several other customers in the Emirates. Overall, we see a significant potential for vertical farming in the country.”
According to Data Bridge, the Middle East and Africa’s vertical farming market will have reached $6225.19 million by 2030.
This growth is attributed to several factors, including the increasing presence of a diverse expatriate population, a thriving tourism industry, and the high demand for fresh produce in the premium hospitality sector.
On the other hand, the emphasis on food security and sustainable food practices in the UAE has led to a surge in vertical farming investments and support from the government.