Dr Stephen O. Dania, HOD, Soil Science, Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, is the leader of a research team currently involved in a research trial based on a research grant provided by Indorama Fertilizer Company, Eleme, Port Harcourt, undertaking research on the efficacy of a Neem -coated urea and Micro-nutrient coated urea as an effective fertilizer for the production of maize, rice and other food crops.

The collaborative effort for the production of this novel farm fertilizer is between Indorama, the largest fertilizer company in Africa, Faculty of Agriculture Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma and the Farm Input Support Service Dept. of Federal Ministry of Agriculture & RD.

The research trial is almost complete and the head of research of Indorama fertilizer company Eleme led a team from Eleme and Abuja to interact with scientists at AAU Ekpoma concerning the final trial report. At a courtesy visit to the Acting Vice-Chancellor AAU, Prof Osarhieme Benson Osadolor, ably represented by Prof A. I. Onigbinde, HOD, Human Nutrition and Dietetics, the team gave information that a new more effective neem-coated urea fertilizer has been produced that will increase farm yield, reduce the effects of pest on crops and will be of immense benefit to farmers.

The team informed the AVC that Indorama has been in collaboration with AAU since 2018 for research synergy that has benefited many Masters and PHD students and for the improvement of fertilizer production in Nigeria.

The collaboration has provided a platform for the training of more than 45 thousand local farmers between January and May 2021 and the final trial of this highly beneficial neem- coated urea is the high point of this collaboration.

In his response, the Acting Vice-Chancellor, ably represented, welcomed the team from Eleme and Abuja and thanked them for selecting AAU for this mutually beneficial collaboration for the improvement of the yield of food crops in Nigeria. He observed that this new research breakthrough will go a long way to improving the food security in Nigeria, which is an important component of national security.

Undeniably AAU is forging ahead strongly in fulfilling its mandate for the creation of knowledge, training of research giants and contribution to the development of society. Other members of the research team that visited the AVC were Prof V. B. Okaka, Professor. Of Crop Science, Mrs R. A Eniola, a researcher in the Department of Soil Science and Prof I Ikhimioya, Dean, Faculty of Agriculture.

Above is for the information of the University community and the general public.

Edward U. Aihevba,  FCAI
Deputy Registrar, Information/Public Relations Officer.