Industry Insights

ADAFSA Partners with Hub71 to Support Development of Agri-Tech Innovations

To speed the creation and uptake of ground-breaking innovations in agriculture, food safety, food security, and biosecurity, Hub71, Abu Dhabi’s global digital ecosystem, and the Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority (ADAFSA) have signed a partnership agreement.

The alliance will bring together AgriTech industry players to work together to support and enable entrepreneurs in the field of agricultural technology to develop in the industry.

Dr. Mariam Harib AlSuwaidi, ADAFSA’s deputy director-general for operational affairs, and Ahmad Ali Alwan, Hub71’s deputy CEO, signed the contract.

In accordance with the agreement, ADAFSA and Hub71 will connect companies with startups providing technology-based solutions in order to address the issues the agritech sector faces. The agreement is in line with the UAE’s goals for a more sustainable future that safeguards its resources and land, which were declared as the Year of Sustainability in 2023.

Through a mentorship program run by industry experts, startups will also be able to interact with specialists. In order to foster collaborations and encourage new breakthroughs, the two organizations will also work together to establish a robust network of AgriTech stakeholders in business, academia, and government.

The UAE is ranked 23rd overall in the Global Food Security Index (GFSI) for 2022, up 12 spots from 2021. It is also ranked 31st in terms of food affordability, 7th in terms of food availability, 16th in terms of food safety and quality, and 53rd in terms of sustainability and adaptation sub-indicators. The UAE also leads the Middle East and North Africa. The National Food Security Strategy seeks, by 2051, to obtain the top spot in the world food security index by creating a comprehensive national system that enables sustainable food production.

The Director-General of ADAFSA, Saeed Al Bahri Al Ameri, stated, “We are delighted to be working with Hub71 to attract international AgriTech companies to operate out of Abu Dhabi and promote innovative agricultural solutions to support food security and our ambition to achieve first place in the Food Security Index by 2051.”

He pointed out that Hub71 is one of the main projects of “Ghadan 21,” the accelerator program founded in Abu Dhabi to encourage the growth of the emirate as a diverse center of innovation. The collaboration will strengthen the Emirate’s position as a leading source of agricultural innovations for arid regions and solutions to the problems of soil, water, and climate change. Additionally, the programs and incentives offered by the Emirate of Abu Dhabi might benefit foreign companies and creative thinkers.

According to him, the use of modern agricultural technology is in line with the sustainability ideals upheld by the governments of Abu Dhabi and the United Arab Emirates because it provides workable solutions to problems brought on by climate change, rationalizes the use of natural resources, boosts productivity, and improves supply chain efficiency.

The agreement is a tactical move to foster innovation along the producer-to-consumer value chain and to advance long-term food security.

The deal with ADAFSA will enable Hub71 to open doors for AgriTech entrepreneurs to develop ground-breaking solutions that can revolutionize the agriculture industry, according to Ahmad Ali Alwan. AgriTech entrepreneurs are essential to developing solutions that safeguard agricultural supply chains against environmental problems, lowering carbon emissions and promoting sustainable practices as Abu Dhabi reaffirms its commitment to sustainability.

Hub71 will identify and choose the top AgriTech startups from around the globe, giving them access to the ecosystem’s company-building program as well as the cutting-edge research labs and ADAFSA-funded infrastructure throughout Abu Dhabi. This will enable them to make contributions to the advancement of biosecurity systems and the improvement of food quality and safety.

In order to create a broader shared ecosystem for sustainable innovation from the Emirate and to bring stakeholders together in a collaborative setting to interact and transact, Hub71 and ADAFSA will develop a bridge between the government and agritech sectors.

Startups will have access to the larger Abu Dhabi ecosystem through the agreement and will have the chance to collaborate directly with major tech firms, governmental agencies, and investors to develop cutting-edge AgriTech ideas.

The Incentive Programme, Ventures Lab, and engagement platforms and events like Hub71’s Fundraising Roadshow and Demo Days are all accessible to founders, who will also profit from these.