Food company Diana Holding has signed a strategic partnership with Mohammed VI Polytechnic (UM6P) to develop precision agriculture in Morocco.
The agreement will underpin collaborative efforts to develop sustainable agriculture in Morocco through precision tech. This programme will emphasise rationalisation in agriculture resource use, with a particular emphasis on water. Plant nutrition R&D is also on the cards. To support these initiatives, the partners will establish new agricultural research centres alongside two experimental sites in Berkane and Meknes.
The partners have also agreed to deploy precision agriculture services by AgriEdge, a business arm of the University Mohammed VI Polytechnic. AgriEdge analyses data from sensors, satellite images, or drone images to generate recommendations to farmers on cultivation practices.
The agreement was signed on Wednesday 24th November by Rita Maria Zniber, CEO of Diana Holding and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Zniber Domains, and Hicham El Habti, President of the University Mohammed VI Polytechnic. The partnership extends to Domaines Zniber, a subsidiary company of Diana Holding.
Riter Maria Zniber said, “This partnership will allow Zniber Domains to strengthen research, development and innovation in the agricultural and agro-industrial field, and to contribute to the food sovereignty of the country by joining forces with the UM6P.”
Diana Holding is a food and beverage company located in Meknes, Morocco. It had a turnover of 3.3 billion dirhams (356 million US dollars) in 2020. The company has ventures in agriculture, olive growing, poultry farming, trade, and distribution. It was founded in 1958 by Brahim Zniber. His widow Rita Maria Zniber is the current CEO and has led the company since 2014.
The partnership comes at a dynamic time for Moroccan agricultural policy. The African Development Bank recently approved 144 million euros for sustainable agricultural projects in Morocco. The financing agreement was signed on Wednesday November 24th at the Ministry of Agriculture, Maritime Fisheries, Rural Development and Water and Forests. The finance will accelerate Morocco’s new agricultural strategy, “Generation Green 2020-2030”, which aims to support hydropower around the country.