More than 122,550 tons of vegetables crops were produced in both open field and greenhouse farms on 18,711 donums in Abu Dhabi during the farming season 2018/2019. According to Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority (ADAFSA) A total of 74,885 tons of vegetable crops were produced in Al Ain about 61.1% of the emirate's total production, grown on 10,281 donums, at 55% of the total cultivated area. While Al Dhafra farms attained 21.7% of vegetable production, producing about 26,569 tons of vegetable crops grown on 4,199 donums, 22% of the total cultivated area. Meanwhile, Abu Dhabi farms produced about 21,096 tons of vegetables crops, 17.2% of the total production, grown on 4,231 donums, 23% of the cultivated area in Abu Dhabi.
This intensive production translates the efforts made by Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority (ADAFSA) to increase the cultivated area in the emirate, create new farming model using the modern techniques, and overcome water scarcity challenge. In addition to developing sustainable agricultural sector, ADAFSA is keen on supporting the vision of Abu Dhabi Government and meeting farm owners' aspirations by helping them increase local production, to improve its competitiveness in the market and enhance its contribution to the food security system.
The total area of vegetable crops grown in open fields in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi reached about 13,735 donums. About 6,898 donums were cultivated in Al Ain, representing 50.2% of the total cultivated area, while about 3,566 donums were cultivated in Abu Dhabi, at 25.9% of the total area, and 3,272 donums in Al Dhafra, at 23.9%.
A total quantity of vegetables production in the open field farms recorded 44,125 tons during the farming season 2018/2019, Al Ain farms produced about 19,992 tons at about 45.3% of the total production, followed by Al Dhafra farms which produced about 14,051 tons of vegetables at 31.8%, while Abu Dhabi farms produced about 10,081 tons, at 22.9% of the total vegetables production.
Meanwhile, the total area of vegetable crops grown in greenhouses in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi reached about 4,976 donums. About 3,383 donums were cultivated in Al Ain, representing 68% of the total cultivated area in greenhouses, while about 927 donums were cultivated in Al Dhafra, at 18.6% of the total area, and 666 donums in Abu Dhabi, at 13.4%.
The total quantity of vegetables production in the emirate's greenhouses is estimated at 78,425 tons during 2018-2019 farming season. Al Ain farms produced about 54,893 tons, at about 70% of the total production, followed by Al Dhafra farms which produced about 12,517 tons of vegetables, at 16% of the emirate's vegetables production, while Abu Dhabi farms produced about 11,015 tons, at 14% of the total vegetables production in greenhouses.
Regarding forage crops, Abu Dhabi farms produced about 161,506 tons of maize, barley and alfalfa, grown on a total area of 36,259 donums. These crops are used to feed livestock in ranches and farms. Al Ain farms produced about 125,556 tons of forage crops grown on a total area of 27,207 donums, followed by Al Dhafra producing 22,025 tons of crops grown on 5,244 donums, while Abu Dhabi produced 13,925 tons of forage crops grown on 3,808 donums.
This great production culminates ADAFSA's efforts, in cooperation with farmers, to increase the cultivated area in the emirate and develop farming patterns. At the beginning of the farming season, ADAFSA launches an agricultural plan to organize production and diversify varieties according to consumers' needs and conditions of each region.
The crop plan includes about 42 varieties of vegetables, fruits, herbs and organic products, enabling farm owners to sell high-demanded locally-produced products in markets. These crops are cultivated either in greenhouses or open fields, to prevent competition during the production season, such as round tomato, which are grown in greenhouses. In addition, farmers are directed to grow different varieties of fruits, such as fig, mango, orange, guava, grapefruit and lemon, in addition to varieties of herbs , such as mint, parsley and coriander.