“And the pains of childbirth drove her to the trunk of a palm tree; she cried (in her anguish) “Ah! Would that I had died before this! Would that I been a thing forgotten and out of sight.” But (a voice) cried to her from beneath the (palm-tree): Grieve not! for thy Lord hath provided a rivulet beneath thee; and shake towards thyself the trunk of the palm-tree: it will let fall fresh ripe dates upon thee. So eat and drink and cool (thine) eye.” (Qur’an 19:23-26, on Maryam, known to non-Muslims as Mary)
The potentialities of a commercial date production industry in U.A.E. were realized many years ago.
The annual date production in U.A.E. has jumped from less than 8,000 metric tones (MT) in 1971 to more than 240,000 MT in 1995, an increase of about 30 fold.
The date fruit import had consequently dropped from 100,000 MT (1989) to 12,000 MT (1994).
The export of dates had also jumped from zero (0) in 1971 to above 50,000 MT in 1998 with a value of US$ 15 million.
The U.A.E. date harvested area has increased from less than 60 hectares (ha) in 1971 to 31,005 ha in 1996. This increase in area is about 48 times and allowed the country to be internationally classified as the Seventh major producing country with six percent of the world date production.