November 6, 2020

Abu Dhabi ensures emergency food supplies are secured

Abu Dhabi holding company ADQ has established a new firm named Silal to diversify the emirate’s food sources and boost local production of food using desert farming technology.  

The Middle East Economic Digest (MEED) reports that Silal, which means ‘baskets’ in Arabic, will strengthen food security by increasing yields of locally grown, raised and manufactured food. Its responsibilities will include managing offtake programmes and strategic food reserves.

The company will also facilitate knowledge-transfer programmes related to desert farming technology, as well as other research and development projects to boost local production of fresh fruits and vegetables by small farmers in the UAE.

The creation of Silal is aimed at securing access to safe, sufficient and nutritious food at affordable prices, according to ADQ’s chief investment officer, Khalifa Sultan al-Suwaidi.

“Silal also complements ADQ’s existing investments in the food and agriculture sector as we seek to expand this important economic cluster,” he said. 

Sustainable production

Jamal Salem al-Dhaheri, appointed CEO of the company, added that several programmes and initiatives will benefit retailers, farmers and the community by ensuring sustained production, sourcing and distribution of essential foods in Abu Dhabi.

ADQ acquired a 50 per cent stake in global agribusiness company Al-Dahra Holding Company in May this year. Agthia and Al-Foah, which produce foods and beverages, are also part of ADQ’s food and agriculture portfolio through Abu Dhabi’s General Holding Corporation (Senaat).