The United Arab Emirates pavilion at the Expo 2023 Doha Horticultural Exhibition organised a seminar on agricultural practices and their impact on the sustainability of food security. It discussed a new book issued by the International Center for Biosaline Agriculture (ICBA) entitled: 'Agricultural Practices in the UAE: Heritage and Science'.
The seminar presented by Director-General of the ICBA, Dr Tarifa al-Zaabi, focused on the importance of traditional agricultural practices and linking them to modern science and innovations that contribute to the sustainability of food security at the local level. Research conducted by the UAE was also highlighted, and it can be applied in the region due to the similarity between the UAE's environment and that of Qatar as both have deserts and use comparable agricultural systems.
ICBA's director-general spoke about the challenges facing the region in general, whether in terms of drought, water scarcity, or the lack of fertile agricultural land, as they have experience with the challenges presented, but the idea lies in how to provide solutions that are environmentally friendly, contribute to saving energy and increasing agricultural productivity.
She praised Qatar's hosting of Expo 2023 Doha, emphasising that it is an exceptional edition in terms of the presentation of the participants, highlighting agricultural practices and food security challenges in the current period, noting that they are getting to know the best practices globally, as the international exhibition is a platform containing ideas, solutions, and partnerships.
Dr Tarifa al-Zaabi explained that ICBA is a non-profit international centre specialising in agricultural research, based in the UAE. It was established with the support of the government, the Islamic Development Bank, the Arab Fund for Economic and Social Development, and the Opec Fund for International Development. The headquarters of the centre is located in Dubai and has a regional office in Central Asia and the South Caucasus in Tashkent, Uzbekistan.
She pointed out that the centre has an international team of elite scientists, experts, and professionals with extensive knowledge, skills, and experience, to find solutions to food security challenges through research on crops, water scarcity, and climate change, as well as research on the possibility of having multiple agricultural productivity, where the centre is a founding member of the International Association for Research and Development for Agriculture.
She added that they launched the book 'Agricultural Practices in the UAE: Heritage and Science', clarifying that it includes about 19 agricultural practices that have been scientifically compared. These agricultural practices are carried out by farmers in the UAE, and scientific studies have proven that they are feasible in terms of the sustainability of agriculture and major resources.
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