Farmers and farm managers from the Gulf states will find a visit to EuroTier 2018 and EnergyDecentral useful for their businesses, according to a delegation of managers from the DLG (German Agricultural Society), organizer of EuroTier and EnergyDecentral exhibitions. DLG conducted a successful visit this autumn to the Middle East organized by the German-Saudi Arabian Liaison Office for Economic Affairs (GESALO).
The five-day trip to Saudi Arabia, which took place in October, included meetings with the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA) and the Saudi Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture (MEWA), as well as visits to some of the world’s largest dairy farms.
The delegation was given an overview of the agricultural reforms included in the Saudi Vision 2030 plan to reduce the country’s dependence on oil, diversify its economy, and develop public service sectors such as health, education, infrastructure, recreation and tourism. As a result, the DLG and its Saudi hosts agreed to jointly organize a conference in 2018 about the latest developments and the impact of Saudi Vision 2030 on the agricultural sector.
“Saudi Arabia is an important country for EuroTier and EnergyDecentral, with more than 500 visitors from the Gulf region attending in 2016,” said Annette Reichhold the DLG’s Area Manager Middle East. “Farm managers come to find solutions for their farms in order to modernize them. Especially of interest are solutions related to energy.”
“Meanwhile, many Arabian countries have changed their policy towards energy production in recent years, with a new focus on renewable energies. Many photovoltaic and wind power projects have already been implemented, and the Saudi Vision 2030 plan states the country is aiming to harvest 9.5 gigawatts of renewable energy annually in just 13 years.
“Saudi Arabia houses the largest dairy farms in the world,” added Reichhold. “Biomass like liquid manure can be used as substrate for biogas plants that could supply both farms and the employees’ villages with emission-free energy. EnergyDecentral will be invaluable to farm owners and managers looking for the most up-to-date information on renewable energy,” adds Reichhold
The DLG delegation visited Almarai, which with some 104,500 milking cows is the world’s largest integrated dairy foods company. It serves more than 52,000 customers daily in the six nations that make up the Gulf Cooperation Council – Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates.
Animal welfare and high-quality hygiene standards are the key points that keep the huge Saudi farms successful, but there’s a new focus on sustainability too. The delegation also visited Al Safi farm, that turns its liquid manure into compost, and NADEC farm that is developing a 100 megawatt independent local electricity generation scheme encompassing solar, biomass and energy efficiency technologies like ORC waste heat recovery.
The delegation also got an insight into egg production in Saudi Arabia, visiting Faylag farm that is home to 600,000 laying hens. These visits resulted in lively discussions between the DLG delegation and their hosts about farm organization, manure management, animal feeding and the pros and cons of implementing biogas plants.
EuroTier, the world’s leading trade fair for animal production, and EnergyDecentral 2018, a unique international meeting place for the energy industry, take place in Hanover, Germany, from 13 to 16 November 2018.