The College of Science and Engineering (CSE) at Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Hassad Food, Qatar’s premier investor in the food and agribusiness sectors, to advance science and technology through data exchange, co-operation, research and development in the area of food production.
The agreement entails a commitment to developing research programmes designed to promote academic and industry relations, foster innovation, and facilitate the development and use of state-of-the-art technology and design of food production systems.
Under the agreement, CSE and Hassad commit to supporting mutually agreed research projects in the fields of relevance to Hassad Food, which relate to food security, sustainable food production, energy efficiency, water management and artificial intelligence (AI) within the water-saving pilot greenhouse, located at one of Hassad’s farms in Al Sheehaniya.
The agreement also includes collaborating with HBKU’s degree programmes at CSE, to assist student research projects in the fields of food security, sustainable food production, energy efficiency, water and crop management, robotics, data science and AI on farms belonging to Hassad Food and within the water-saving pilot greenhouse.
Reflecting on the aims of the MoU, Dr Tareq al-Ansari, assistant professor, CSE, said: “ To date, through our ongoing research projects and industry partnerships, we have demonstrated how we can contribute to enhancing sustainable food production and food security in Qatar. We now look forward to this new opportunity to formally collaborate with Hassad Food and strengthen their programmes to develop the country’s livestock and agricultural sector.”
Dr Mounir Hamdi, founding dean of CSE, said: “ The agreement exemplifies how research-industry collaboration can help to build confidence in the digitalisation of agricultural processes and support the industry to expand their capabilities to implement innovative solutions. The outcomes and benefits to Hassad Food will pave the way for the advancement of the entire agricultural sector, with a positive impact on Qatar’s growth and development.”
Mubarak al-Sahuti, business development director at Hassad Food, added: “It is our pleasure to collaborate with CSE, as we always seek to support research and development initiatives and programmes, with the aim of developing the local agriculture sector and support it in achieving self-sufficiency.”