UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – The Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority (ADAFSA) in cooperation with some national research centres in the UAE, has launched the Abu Dhabi Agricultural Genome Programme (ADAGP), in order to apply the best international practices in the field of agricultural genetic research.

Considered the first of its kind in the region, the programme enhances Abu Dhabi’s position at the regional and international levels, and makes it a scientific reference in the field of agricultural genomes.

It is part of Abu Dhabi’s ambitious food abundance plan initiatives, where genetic studies are an important step towards providing innovative solutions to the future food security challenges, enhancing the food security system of the emirate and the country.

It will also contribute to enhancing sustainable agricultural production by improving animal breeds and plant varieties and giving them genetic traits of economic value to promote the agricultural sector, enhance food security, and increase its contribution to the emirate’s GDP.

The programme is a key pillar of the initiatives and programmes of the Strategic Plan of the Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority 2022-2025. It aims to develop local breeds of plant, animal and fish farming, ensure improved agricultural production and meet the challenges of the emirate’s climatic and environmental conditions.

Further, it aims to establish a gene bank to conserve local plant, animal and fish genetic resources, and establish a database for its genetic strains, and more potential samples when needed in the future.

ADAGP will develop local capacities to promote the conservation and registration of local plant and animal breeds internationally, genetic sequencing processes, the study of virtual and genetic traits of plants and animals, and the identification of genetic evidence of the desired characteristics of animal and plant genetic resources.

Saeed Al Bahri Al Ameri, Director General of ADAFSA, confirmed that the programme is one of the leading projects to anticipate the future of the agriculture sector.

He stressed that the agricultural genome programme embodies the vision and commitment of the wise leadership that oversees the UAE Genome Programme Council to strengthen the UAE’s position as a centre for research and innovation in genomics.

Al Ameri expounded that the programme reduces the costs of caring for livestock and plant resources by electing disease-resistant varieties and breeds with high productive qualities.

He explained that ADAFSA is putting top priority for the next phase to activate and strengthen partnerships that support scientific research and development, to build and implement scientific and practical research methodologies and studies that support agricultural sustainability goals and leadership in food security.

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