University of Nigeria, Nsukka will by December start the supply of ginger to McCormick Company, a major producer of spices, flavouring and herbs in the United States of America, the Vice-Chancellor Prof Benjamin Ozumba has said.
Ginger is a flowering plant that originated from China. It belongs to the Zingiberaceae family, and is closely related to turmeric, cardomon and galangal. The rhizome (underground part of the stem) is the part commonly used as a spice. It is often called ginger root, or simply ginger.t is prized for its medicinal and culinary properties.
Ozumba made the disclosure recently .
“We have signed Memorandum of Understanding with McCormic Company to off-take any quantity of ginger we produce,” the Vice-Chancellor said, while inspecting over five hectares of ginger farm planted in April at the Nsukka campus of University.
According to Ozumba, who spoke recently, the farm is a pilot study for a large scale ginger production by the university.
The initiative, according to the Vice-Chancellor, is facilitated by alumni of the University based in the United States of America with the intention of providing good teaching point for students and revenue to the institution.
He said the farm was established for the purpose of research, teaching and agribusiness in line with the land-grant mandate of the institution. “As a land-grant university, agriculture is one of our strong points,” Ozumba said.
Besides the ginger farm, the Vice-Chancellor said his administration had also invested in other aspects of agriculture including pepper farm, cattle fattening and ranching, snail farming and poultry farming.
He said the university was making arrangement to bring in 300 dairy cows with robotic milking from Michigan State University before the end of 2018 to start milk production in the university.
“We want our students to know that there is money in agriculture,” the Vice-Chancellor said.
Under Ozumba’s administration, all moribund farms in the university have been revived, including the establishment of feed mills, cassava floor processing plants and the building of green houses.