Taking place under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister of the UAE, Minister of Presidential Affairs and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority, the Global Forum for Innovations in Agriculture opens on Tuesday, 16 February at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre.
Held in strategic partnership with the Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority, the GFIA acts as a leading hub for experts in diverse areas of the agricultural sector needed to transform systems at large – scientists, inventors, farmers, investors, food producers, NGOs, supply chain, and government officials.
A significant increase in pre-registered visitor numbers at the GFIA 2016 mirrors the rapidly escalating need for innovative agricultural solutions in providing safe, nutritious food amid the expanding global population.
Renowned for hosting the world's largest showcase of sustainable agriculture innovations, exhibitors at GFIA, held at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, will showcase thousands of next-generation agricultural solutions that could reshape sustainable farming around the world.
"Our support of the GFIA is in line with the mission of the Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority to achieve a safe and sustainable future for food security," said Ali Yousef Al Saad, Acting Director of Communication and Community Service at ADFCA.
"By focusing on the development of sustainability by employing the latest technologies and implementing smart strategies, the agricultural industry is reaching out to the world to draw attention to the need for innovation in every facet of life."
Al Saad added: "The Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority is working tirelessly to ensure that Abu Dhabi remains on the global agricultural map and to ensure the UAE capital is a leader in agricultural reform. GFIA is a platform to spotlight the work of scientists and innovators and how they are utilizing the latest technologies that can overcome world hunger, water scarcity and climate change."
This year the show co-locates alongside VIV MEA, a brand-new, regional version of the highly successful livestock production events held in Europe and Asia which focus on tackling global food security challenges.
Hosting over 450 exhibitors, together GFIA and VIV MEA will deliver the largest agriculture event in the Middle East. More than 9,000 visitors from 88 countries are expected to attend this year, an increase from 4,550 visitors from 85 countries in 2015, while 35 ministerial delegations, 225 scientists and more than 130 speakers who will address the audience.
The second day will open with a panel discussion over the pressing issue of water scarcity. Currently, agriculture consumes almost 70% of the world water supplies while the growing world's population and progressing climate change are expected to further exacerbate this problem.
The discussion will be chaired by H.E. Eng. Abdullah Al-Rubaian, Chairman, ARASCO, Saudi Arabia, and its key speakers will include H.E. Ambassador Shahira Wahbi, Chief Sustainable Development & International Cooperation, League of Arab States, Egypt and Dr. Ismahane Elouafi, Director General, International Centre for Biosaline Agriculture (ICBA), UAE.
GFIA is sponsored by the UAE Ministry of Presidential Affairs, Khalifa International Award for Date Palm & Agricultural Innovation, Abu Dhabi Farmers Services Centre, Emirates Food Industries, Koppert Biological Systems, AGCO, GODAN, Mato Grosso, The Rockefeller Foundation and CoolFarm and staged with the support of Masdar Institute, University of Arizona, Kingdom of The Netherlands, CTA, GlobalG.A.P, CGIAR, SAI Platform, Wageningen UR and the Abu Dhabi Convention Bureau.