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Join Us in Abuja, Nigeria | November 19-23, 2018



About the Training


Fertilizers available to smallholder African farmers have for decades concentrated on the NPK macro-nutrients: nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. Over the past decade, however, the importance of micronutrients has come to prominence. In this context, micronutrients also include the secondary nutrients calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), and sulfur (S), which are required by plants in the range of 5-40 kg/ha, and the true micronutrients zinc (Zn), boron (B), copper (Cu), iron (Fe), manganese (Mn), and molybdenum (Mo), which are required in much smaller quantities, usually less than 1 kg/ha. When micronutrients are lacking, response to the NPKs can be severely restricted. In some cases, yields can be doubled by micronutrient additions.  Crops, like humans, need a full range of nutrients for healthy growth.

Balanced crop nutrition refers to feeding crops with a balanced suite of nutrients that are lacking in the soil. If more than one is in short supply, growth is limited by the nutrient that is in lowest supply. If several nutrients are deficient, all must be applied to obtain optimal yields. Soil acidity constraints may also need to be simultaneously addressed.

Soil analyses from several African countries indicates multiple micronutrient deficiencies appear to be common. Trial results from many countries confirm significant and widespread response to micronutrients. In response, fertilizer manufacturers and blenders are bringing a host of new fertilizer products to Africa. However, challenges still remain in developing and delivering balanced fertilizers to smallholders at the massive scale required.

The purpose of this workshop is to assist participants, in their various roles, in bringing balanced crop nutrition to smallholder farmers. Participants will have many opportunities to interact and understand the added value of the multiple stakeholders working together to bring balanced crop nutrition to farmers.


Training Program Content


  • Government officials in ministries in charge of establishing and implementing fertilizer policy, regulations, and quality control systems.
  • Soil scientists and agronomists from national and international research systems.
  • Those involved in soil and plant analysis from both the public and private sector.
  • Fertilizer manufacturers, blenders, and representatives of the fertilizer private sector.
  • Donors interested in investments in increased crop productivity.


The program will address the below topics through a series of interactive presentations and panels, and a field trip to a fertilizer blending facility.

  1. Soil-SMaRT: An overview of the step-wise pathway to bringing balanced fertilizers to smallholder farmers.
  2. Soil analysis and mapping: Knowing the extent of nutrient deficiencies is crucial to developing and marketing improved fertilizers. What to expect—and to not expect—from these crucial steps; pitfalls to avoid. Different analyses available and their appropriateness to different situations. Partners in quality soil analysis and mapping.
  3. Recommendations development: Developing knowledge regarding which nutrients belong in specific fertilizers, and which do not; different nutrient sources available; nutrient rates appropriate for compounds and blends; using trials and demonstrations to develop and evaluate better fertilizers.
  4. Technology transfer: Moving from trials and demonstrations to making fertilizers available to farmers. Developing farmer awareness of new products. Marketing and distribution challenges. Partners who can assist in rapid diffusion of new fertilizer products.
  5. Policy and regulations: Policies and fertilizer regulations need to be adapted to a dynamic and evolving fertilizer market. How fertilizer registration, subsidy policy, and regulations can facilitate or hinder the process of bringing balanced fertilizers to farmers; implications for monitoring fertilizer quality. Creating a facilitating environment for new fertilizer products.
  6. The fertilizer industry: Learn about the processes for producing fertilizers, including manufacture and blending, the difference between compounds and blends, and which is best placed for specific circumstances.
  7. Fertilizer platforms: The importance of national public-private sector platforms to developing and navigating roadmaps to appropriate fertilizer use.
  8. The donor community: Investing in country-specific contexts.


Travel and Fees


The program will begin Monday morning, November 19, 2018, in Abuja, Nigeria. Participants should arrive on Sunday, November 18, 2018. The program will conclude on Friday, November 23, at approximately 5:00 p.m. It is up to the participants to select their departure date, bearing in mind that the negotiated room rate in Abuja may not be available for extended stays past November 23.



This workshop will take place at the NAF Conference Centre & Suites located in Kado, Abuja. Only 23 miles from Abuja Airport it is easily accessible via the main expressway links.

NAF Conference Centre & Suites has agreed to offer participants of this training program a rate of N 30,000 (approximately U.S. $84) per room per night. This rate is for standard rooms and inclusive of breakfast. Suites overlook the pool area and include king sized beds, TVs, fridges, desks, and WiFi access.

Please book your room as soon as possible, as space will fill up quickly. Contact the hotel no later than October 19, 2018 to reserve your room. After this date, reservations will be subject to hotel room availability and at the best available rate. Participants should arrive on Sunday, November 18, 2018.


NAF Conference Centre & Suites

Plot 496 Ahmadu Bellow Way,
Gwarimpa Expressway Deeper Life Junction
Kado, Abuja, Nigeria

Phone: +234 09-2912603, 07018979959




Enrollment and Fees

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The program fee for this training course is US $1,700 per participant (inclusive of a US $250 non-refundable deposit) and should reach IFDC no later than October 19, 2018, four (4) weeks before the program is scheduled. Those received thereafter will be accepted at IFDC’s discretion and incur a late fee. Participants will be given the opportunity to take advantage of an early bird rate if registration and payment is received by IFDC prior to October 19, 2018. Please refer to the table for pricing.

The program fee, less the non-refundable deposit and, if applicable, the wire fee, will be refunded for cancellations made two (2) weeks before the commencement of the program. Ninety percent of the paid fee will be returned and 10 percent, in addition to the deposit, will be charged to cover administrative costs for cancellations made between two (2) weeks and one (1) week before the commencement of the program. Cancellations made less than one (1) week before the commencement of the program will receive no refund.

Registration will be on a first-come, first-served basis. Paid participants will receive priority. An organization wishing to enroll more than one participant should supply information and payment for each participant.


Payment of the program fee can be made by:

  • (1) check or draft payable to IFDC;
  • (2) wire transfer to IFDC’s account in the U.S.A. through First Metro Bank, 406 West Avalon Avenue, Muscle Shoals, Alabama, U.S.A., ABA number 062203955 for credit to IFDC account number 55281; or
  • (3) major credit card – MasterCard, Visa or American Express.

The program fee covers registration, training and reference material, coffee/tea breaks, all lunches and surface transportation on field trips. The fee does not include air travel, lodging and dinner expenses or medical and communication expenses.


APPLICATIONS FOR NECESSARY VISAS SHOULD BE MADE AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE. A visa is required for entry into the United States. Each participant must obtain a visa from the Embassy or Consulate in their country of residence. Participants should fulfill all required immunizations and health formalities before departing their country of residence. Medical insurance should be obtained by participants. The program fee does not cover any medical insurance or expenses.




IFDC is a nonprofit, public international organization (PIO) dedicated to increasing agricultural productivity and food production through the development and use of plant nutrients in sustainable crop production systems. Headquartered in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, U.S.A., IFDC is involved in human resource development, research and technical assistance in collaboration with public, private, national and international organizations throughout the world. IFDC has conducted more than 700 formal workshops, study tours and training programs for over 11,000 participants from over 150 countries since 1974. The programs have covered a wide range of subjects including integrated soil fertility management and fertilizer use efficiency, fertilizer production technology, agro-input dealerships, competitive marketing, supply chain management, investment analysis, policy reforms and numerous specialized topics.

For all Training Program inquiries, contact:

James Thigpen
Training Coordinator

IFDC – P.O. Box 2040 Muscle Shoals, Alabama 35662, U.S.A.

As a nonprofit organization, IFDC does not finance or sponsor any participant.