Dubai opens the first vertical farm with iFarm technologies in the UAE

The farm is located just a 30-minute drive from the heart of Dubai. Spanning a 784m² industrial building, the Green Farm optimizes space usage with vertical multi-level racks for seedlings and plants, resulting in a total growing area of 712m².

Dubai farm BIM model:

With a focus on serving the premium retail and HoReCa sectors, the farm aims to grow over 3 tonnes of produce per month. The ultra-fresh greens and herbs will be supplied to restaurants, hotels and resorts in Dubai, as well as retail chains such as Spinneys, Geant, Grandiose and Carrefour.

The UAE’s farm is the first in the world to grow crops using the new iFarm Multigreens technology. iFarm Multigreens allows a variety of crops to be grown in the same space: microgreens, baby leaves, multiple herb varieties, leafy greens, and edible flowers. This makes production very flexible and allows the farm to adapt its product range to business objectives and seasonality.

 

iFarm Multigreens technology.
Photo: iFarm.


The main difference between iFarm Multigreens and other iFarm vertical farming technologies centers around the hydroponic system employed. The Dubai farm uses the Ebb & Flow system, also known as Flood & Drain, which involves the periodic flooding and draining of nutrient solutions.
"Ebb & Flow enhances oxygen supply to the plant roots, resulting in more efficient nutrition. The new hydroponic system, combined with higher planting density in the seedlings area, has led to record yields per square meter of growing area. For example, when using iFarm Multigreens technology, Friese lettuce yields 38% more than on peat farms with a different watering and planting method," explains Nikolay Podvigin, agricultural technologist at iFarm.


One of the farm's products is microgreens. These are sprouts from radish, broccoli, red mustard and other crops. Because of the short growing cycle, microgreens are very profitable - they are harvested just 7-14 days after planting.
 

Microgreens on a vertical farm, iFarm Multigreens technology, photo iFarm

Microgreens, iFarm Multigreens technology.
Photo: iFarm.
 
"Baby leaves and leafy greens will also take their place on the vertical multi-level racks. We also plan to grow edible flowers - violas, begonias and electric flowers. We expect the first harvest on the farm this month," says Nikita Zubko, managing director of Green Farm.
 

Vertical farm growing area, iFarm Multigreens technology, photo iFarm

Growing area. iFarm Multigreens technology.
Photo: iFarm.


The farm is managed by iFarm Growtune, an all-in-one IT-driven farm management software. It contains plant growth recipes, livestock management tools, farm business records, and other tools a farmer needs to achieve high-quality yield within a precisely predictable timeframe.


"By implementing iFarm Growtune for automation, we have optimized our payroll," Nikita Zubko explains. "We now have just 5 employees on the farm, handling basic production operations, while we have entrusted the oversight and control of complex technological processes to iFarm Growtune software."


iFarm is currently negotiating the supply of farming equipment to several other customers in the UAE.

In addition to the UAE, iFarm's vertical farming technologies are already being used in vertical farms in France, Switzerland, Saudi Arabia and other countries around the world.
 

About iFarm

iFarm is a technology development company for IT-driven plant growth in a controlled environment. Working with indoor farm projects ranging from 500 to 20,000 m2, the company provides ready-to-use vertical farming systems to grow leafy greens, strawberries and veggies, with full support before and after setting up a farm. The key feature is an intelligent farm management software iFarm Growtune which optimizes yields and increases farm productivity.

 

Founded in 2017, with headquarters in Abu-Dhabi (UAE), iFarm has operational and in-construction farms in Europe, the Middle East, and Asia with a total growing area over 13,000 m2, with a focus on developing in the MENA region. In 2022, the company participated in the Hub71 program in Abu-Dhabi (UAE).

 

iFarm was awarded a “Solar Impulse Efficient Solution” Label, which is a proof of high standards in profitability and sustainability; "Best Social Impact Startup" honors at the Nordic Startup Awards “Innovate For Good”;  Vertical Farming World Awards in the "Best AI/Automation Development" category; Global Startup Awards; Europe's Hottest AgFood Tech startup by The Europasl; TOP-20 team honors at Impact Collective 2020 for Sustainable Agriculture and Food; and other recognitions. 

 

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