PROJECT DETAIL: CASTOR OIL
Following are the details of the project:
Castor is a commercially important strategic plant because of the many industrial applications of the oil obtained from the seed and also the seed cake which is a source of organic fertilizer. Castor oil finds application in almost all the sectors of the manufacturing industries. From the automobile industry where it is used in hydraulic and brake fluid production to the pharmaceutical where it is used to produce laxative. The highest application is found in the cosmetic sector in the formulation of various body and hair treatments and soap production.
To address the issue of sustainable raw materials supply with improved oil yield, the Council, in collaboration with a Research Institute and University carried out multi-location trials on 10 promising accessions in the eastern, Norther and western parts of the country. This brought about supply of 5 accessions and 4 while 1 was a local variety, from the Research Institute and University respectively. So far, results have shown the major areas with high yielding oil. The Council further collaborated with the Association of Castor Oil Producers, Processors and Marketers as well a company in Ghana has developed improved castor seeds variety.
To consolidate on these in the aspect of processing, the Council procured 2 units of castor seed shellers to address the issue of seed shelling being done manually with a lot of breakages. In collaboration with the Castor Seed Growers, Processors and Marketers Association of Nigeria (CASGPMAN), a replication through reverse engineering was carried out for domestication and proliferation of the technology.
The Council’s success led to the establishment of two castor oil processing companies in Efugo Farms Ltd, Kuje, Abuja and Tranquil Mazab Farms Ltd, Ilorin, Kwara State.