UAE Minister for State for Food Security reveals the country’s plans to address global food security challenges through the “FoodTech Challenge”
On the occasion of World Food Day, marked at the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization in Rome, Her Excellency Mariam bint Mohammed Saeed Hareb Almheiri, UAE Minister of State for Food Security, spoke to the significance of global food security challenges and their impact on future generations.
Appealing to university students, early-stage start-ups and tech incubators in advanced urban farming markets from around the world, the Minister revealed plans by the UAE government to find innovative solutions across the food value chain through an open call-for-submissions to the “FoodTech Challenge.”
Open to applicants from around the world, the FoodTech Challenge seeks commercially viable solutions that promote sustainable food practices and stimulate domestic food production in the UAE. At the end of the competition, four teams will be awarded against a $1 million prize pool.
Launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, the FoodTech Challenge is an initiative of the UAE Food Security Office in partnership with Tamkeen, an Abu Dhabi-based company mandated to deliver projects to meet the UAE’s vision of knowledge-based development.
Speaking on World Food Day, H.E. Mariam bint Mohammed Saeed Hareb Almheiri, UAE Minister of State for Food Security, said: “Despite challenges related to scarcity of water resources and arable land, we have begun to see Agtech solutions gain traction in the UAE. The FoodTech Challenge works towards the goal of attracting bright minds and encouraging innovators from around the world to take part in shaping the future of sustainable food systems. We believe that by setting this challenge in motion, and delivering results through Agtech solutions, we can create a replicable model for the world.”
Applications for the FoodTech Challenge will remain open until February 2020, when submissions will be shortlisted and the top 10 teams will present their business cases at an awards ceremony held at New York University Abu Dhabi in April 2020. A panel of judges including Agtech industry experts will select four winners across two categories: household farming and community farming.
Entrants can submit their applications via www.foodtechchallenge.com.