The National Cereals Research Institute is the oldest Research Institute in the Country. It was originally founded by the Lagos Colonial Protectorate Administration of Governor Alfred Moloney in 1898. It was named the Federal Agricultural Station by the Lugard Administration in 1915. It later metamorphosed to Federal Department of Agricultural Research in 1945 with a mandate to carry out research on all agricultural crops and farming systems throughout the Country. By decree 13 of 1975, it assumed its present name National Cereals Research Institute (NCRI) and was given the mandate to conduct research into the genetic improvement and production of the major stable grains like rice, maize, cowpea and sugarcane. The re-organization of the agricultural research system in 1987 gave NCRI new mandate crops which were Rice, Soybean, Beniseed, Sugarcane, and the farming system in the Middle belt Zone
comprising of Benue, Kogi, Kwara, Nassarawa, Niger, Plateau, Taraba States and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.

Research is conducted in ten (10) outstations located in different parts of the country: Ibadan, (Oyo State), Amakama-olokoro (Abia State), Uyo Ubo-ukuku (Akwa-Ibom State), Warri (Delta State), Bacita (Kwara State), Mokwa (Niger State), Birnin – Kebbi (Kebbi State), Numan (Adamawa State), Yandev (Benue State) and Riyom (Plateau State). On-farm adaptive trials are conducted multilocationally, particularly in the central zone. This ensures that our results are applicable in the different ecologies in the country.

Key Mandates of the Institute

The Institute has the mandate to conduct research into the genetic improvement of rice, soybean, beniseed, acha, castor and sugarcane as well as overall farming systems and resource management research and extension in the Middle Belt Zone of Nigeria comprising of 8 states (Benue, Kogi, Kwara, Nassarawa, Niger, Plateau, Taraba States and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja)

Lists of Mandate Crops and Others

List of mandates
1. Research into improvement of Rice
2. Acha
3. Research into improvement of sugarcane and Brown sugar Production Techniques
4. Research into Improvement of soybean
5. Beniseed
6. Castor
7. Research into Improvement of Farming Systems and Extension
8. Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation
9. Breeder and Foundation seeds/sets production
10. Dissemination of Research Results and Special projects

Key Achievement

  • Six (6) industrial cane varieties have been developed and released to sugar industries and local sugar processors by NCRI.
  • NCRI has also developed a brown sugar processing technology which is now being used by brown sugar processors at Kona-Mada in FCT, Sara in Jigawa State and Gbajigi in Niger state.
  • NCRI has so far released 57 improved rice varieties which most farmers are using in Nigeria. This has enabled the farmers increase their yields and income.
  • Improved rice processing technology has been developed by the institute. This technology is presently being used by multinationals like AGIP, Obasanjo farms and local entrepreneurs, thus improving the quality of processed rice.
  • NCRI has developed eight (8) improved soybean varieties which are now being used by farmers across the country. This has led to increased farmers’ yield and income
  • Development of low input sustainable production systems for the Resource-poor farmers
  • Crop utilization through the development of recipes.
  • Production and distribution of farmer’s guides and technical bulletins
  • Production of breeder seeds of our mandate crops for NSS.
  • Trained 950 subject Matter Specialists (SMSs) from the ADPs in the use of technologies developed by NCRI in the past 5 years.

Lists of Prioritized Research Agenda

  • Breeding and varietal maintenance of our mandate Crops
  • Agronomic Practices for the cultivation of our mandate crops
  • Soil improvement practices.
  • Crop Protection practices.
  • Adding values to our mandate crops through processing and utilizations
  • Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation of our research activities
  • Diagnostic and thematic surveys
  • Socio-Economic studies
  • Dissemination of Research Results.