The U.A.E. is becoming a world leader in innovation-driven food security.
Faced with an arid climate and unpredictable growing conditions, the U.A.E. has long been dependent on food imports to feed its population. Moreover, climate change and regional instability threaten the continued availability of fresh produce, meat, and grains.
In response, the U.A.E. has appointed a Minister of State for Food Security and begun to invest in innovative agricultural techniques and crops that can withstand its desert climate—most notably algae and dates. Leading Emirati food producers are also playing a major role in the country’s food security efforts. A group of companies known as the “Food Security Alliance,” is working to diversify sourcing locations and crop varieties to hedge against geopolitical instability and climate change.
Given the expertise of American food producers, the U.A.E. has turned to the U.S. as a key partner in its work to provide abundant and nutritious food to its growing population.
H.E. Mariam Almheiri, U.A.E. Minister of State for Food Security, recognizing potential in U.S.-U.A.E. partnerships, worked with the Business Council to arrange for ten innovative U.S. AgTech companies to visit the U.A.E. for a series of ministerial and private sector meetings in February 2020. U.S. delegates included CEOs of vertical farms, shipping container farms, a blockchain livestock tracking company, and leading irrigation components producers. The Business Council’s Department of Commerce-certified mission paved the way for new U.S.-U.A.E. partnerships and built a foundation for continued cooperation involving both public and private sector stakeholders.
Building on the success of this mission, and recognizing the increasing importance of this sector to the U.A.E., the Business Council continues to strengthen bilateral partnerships in food security by planning additional trade missions, sharing industry-specific information, making connections, hosting events with key stakeholders, and supporting a growing portfolio of involved member companies.