Abu Dhabi based Pegasus Food Futures has unveiled plans to use artificial intelligence to improve the outcome of hydroponic farming. Artificial intelligence is expected to both improve efficiency and reduce the costs associated with hydroponic farming, while as the same time optimize the nutritional value of the crops.
The plans were unveiled at the Global Forum for Innovations in Agriculture, held in Adu Dhabi. The project is still in its infancy and not many details were given. What was clear however is that Pegasus has great faith in this, and the corporation has recently acquired plenty of land – in both Abu Dhabi and Portugal – where they can put their plans into action.
Large expansions planned for Pegasus
Pegasus is already one of the leading owners and operators of hydroponic farming facilities in southern Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. They are now embarking on an expansive stage that, among other things, will include the ceration of an Agricultura City in the United Arab Emirates. This city will comprise not just greenhouses and agricultural land, but also educational facilities, a R&D hub, and a discovery centre for visitors. The crops grown here will be packed and processed locally, directly after harvest, in special facilities. At least initially, the focus will be on lettuce, tomatoes, peppers, beans, herbs, and a few other sallad items.
A solution for dry lands?
Pegaus chief focus is to set up farms in sunny but arid areas, where conventional farming struggle to thrive because of the draught but hydroponics, with their much more efficient use of water, can do excellent and doesn’t require artificial lights.
One of the results that we can be expected to see soon from Pegasus’ expansion is the export of hydroponically grown strawberries and salads leaves from their new facilities in Portugal to the United Kingdom and parts of Asia, including the Arabian peninsula. These premium products will be sold under the brand PICCD.