A world leader in phosphate and its derivatives, OCP Africa, has affirmed that efficient use of specialty fertiliser is one of the best ways to increase farmers’ productivity and ensure food security.
In addressing the Nigeria’s food security challenges for instance, according to OCP Africa, there is a need to discontinue the use of generic fertilizer blends for all soil and crop types, stating that there is no better time than now to introduce soil and crop specific fertilisers.
It said the adoption of specialty fertilisers to address specific crop nutrition needs is an emerging trend in global agriculture practice due to different soil nutrient compositions.
To provide customised fertilisers in the Nigeria agricultural space, OCP Africa has taken the initiative by pioneering the research and development and production of crop and soil specific blends of fertiliser by establishing ultra-modern fertiliser blending plants in three states across Nigeria (Kaduna, Ogun and Sokoto).
Each of the three ultra-modern blending plants tagged “Centre of Excellence” comprises of a Blending facility capable of composing five macro and five micro-nutrient elements, a Fertiliser and Soil testing laboratory, a Retail outlet for agricultural products and services called the “Farm and Fortune Hub” and a Model Farm.
The blending plants have a combined production capacity of 500,000 metric tonnes per year.
In line with the National Fertiliser Quality Control Act signed by President Muhammadu Buhari in 2020, OCP Africa has deployed a state-of-the-art laboratory within the blending plant facilities to further ensure quality of its products meets nutrient specification.
Country Manager and Deputy Managing Director OCP Africa Nigeria, Caleb Usoh, disclosed that Ogun and Sokoto plants will commence production by 4th quarter of 2022 while the Kaduna plant which has been completed at the cost of $13.4 million commenced production in March 2022 and is slated for official commissioning this month.
The plant currently operates on a Toll Blending partnership arrangement that allows industry players and brand owners to leverage on OCP Africa’s plant capacity and expertise to provide quality fertilisers to their customers.
According to him, the Kaduna plant currently engages over 250 persons in different job functions all to foster a sustainable agricultural ecosystem in Nigeria.
To further boost local production of fertilisers and enhance export capacity of Nigeria, according to him, OCP Africa is investing in a Joint Venture with the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) to develop Ammonia and DAP Industrial plants.
“The $1.4 billion Industrial Plant project, to be cited in Akwa-Ibom is expected to utilise Nigerian gas and Moroccan phosphate to produce 750,000MT of ammonia and 1,000,000MT of phosphate fertilisers annually by 2025.
With the Nigerian consumption of NPK fertiliser blends projected to exceed 4,500,000 MT by the year 2030, OCP Africa is supporting the projected demand with massive investments in fertiliser production, R&D, distribution channel support, farmer-centric initiatives, among others with a view to actualising the Nigeria vision of ensuring self-sufficiency in food production.
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