Specializing in the development of smart vertical farming solutions, Israel’s Vertical Field made an announcement last week about entering into an agreement with Emirates Smart Solutions and Technologies (ESST). It pertained to a pilot program for launching their vertical farms in the United Arab Emirates, which is the first step leading to full-scale deployments. With this UAE pilot program, they will be able to find out the crops that are most suitable for the local market. The purpose of the vertical firm is to provide the private and commercial sectors with on-site and local produce.
The first stage of this pilot program is expected to lead to a multi-billion dollar partnership in the United Arab Emirates and this will also include deployments of the same in additional areas of the Gulf region. Located in the Northern area of the country, Umm Al Quwain is one of the UAE’s seven constituents and has been chosen as the location of the first farm. It will be a part of a training and research and development center, which will also support a number of other projects later in the other Gulf states. Vertical Fields is based in Ra’anana and was established in 2006.
It uses embedded sensors, advanced IoT software, along with in-house monitors for ensuring that their indoor vertical farms, which are established for growing fresh greens, vegetables, and other plants, are maintained in controlled conditions regardless of weather, physical location, climate conditions, and geography. According to the company, space is utilized efficiently by its soil-based vertical growing systems, which include both outdoors and indoors, for both smart and agricultural landscaping. Guy Elitzur, the chief executive of Vertical Field, said that this collaborative project will deliver innovative agricultural technologies to the Gulf and Emirates region and the partnership is a first-of-its-kind.
He also said that ESST, which was established with the chief executive of Makalde Brothers LTD, Maher Makalde, will bring forty years of experience and innovative technology in the field of agricultural resources and inputs. Makalde said that they were looking forward to the opportunity of partnering with Vertical Field, as it would enable them to take advantage of advanced Israeli technology for the growth of production in a predictable and controlled environment, overcoming harsh climatic conditions. This would result in a high quality, reliable, and pesticide-free crops all year round.
He said that their aim was to create food security without having to depend on imports and come up with a high-quality agricultural infrastructure that could expand to the retail market. Earlier this month, an agreement was signed by Vertical Field with Moderntrend SRO, based in Czech Republic and is one of Ukraine’s largest agricultural distributors. The partnership is to establish the solutions of the Israeli company at a local grocery chain called Varus, which has a total of 95 stores that are spread across 25 cities in the country. Last month, a multi-million agreement was finalized by Vertical Field with Rami Levy, an Israeli grocery chain, for installing vertical farms at almost a dozen branches of the company.