Neem Coated Urea

Urea is a white crystalline substance with the chemical formula NH2-CO-NH2; it is highly water soluble and contains 46% nitrogen. It is used extensively as chemical fertilizer as well as for industrial uses. Government of India mandated all producers to coat urea with Neem Seed oil and fortify Urea.

Neem coated urea is created by utilising two best things available. First the urea created by technology from Air & Natural gas and second products from nature’s gift i.e. neem plant. Neem has proven Nitrification inhibition properties and hence slows down the release of nitrogen from urea and makes available nitrogen over a longer period with minimum loss of nitrogen thereby increasing nitrogen use efficiency. At our Hazira and Shahjahanpur Plants, Neem coated urea is produced by uniformly coating neem oil on prilled urea during the manufacturing process.

Neem coated urea has been demonstrated to improve Nitrogen Use efficiency and consequently increases crop yield especially in Paddy crop in which NUE is as low as 30% and in wheat where NUE is reported around 50%. Coating with neem oil also prevents caking of urea and also reduces the chances of powder formation during transportation & handling. Repellent action of neem also controls many insect-pests and wild animals in fields applied with neem coated urea The level of increase of NUE depends on how efficiently the following agronomic practices are followed with NCU:-

  • Use two or more split applications of NCU matching with crop needs.
  • Apply at proper soil moisture. In high moisture loving crops like Paddy, drain standing water before applying NCU in the evening and re-irrigate the field in morning by maintaining minimum level of water.
  • In case of less moisture–loving crops like wheat; urea may be applied after light irrigation in case of lighter soils whereas it can also be applied before light irrigation in case of heavy soils.
  • Apply urea in the evening when Air/soil temperature is lower. This reduces the chances of volatilization of urea to Ammonia.
  • Apply through drip irrigation as it supplies urea directly to roots and reduces chances of loss.
  • Apply as foliar spray when Nitrogen deficiency is seen or water supply is restricted.
  • Maintain proper soil moisture and aeration in the field.
  • Apply fertilisers after soil test for macro as well as micro nutrients.
  • Apply Nitrogen in right proportion with Phosphorus and Potassium.
  • Apply compost as basal dose which acts as Plant Nutrients bank in the soil. This enhances Nutrient use efficiency many-folds by reducing Nutrient losses.
  • Grow best suited varieties of the crops with recommended package of practices.

Urea which is the best Nitrogen source in today's world is further improved by coating of Neem oil to make it a perfect Nitrogenous fertiliser. The following value-additions are achieved :

  1. Hygroscopicity Reduced: Neem-coated urea is lesser hygroscopic compared to prilled urea so chances of forming lumps/cakes in bags are reduced.
  2. Solubility Reduced: Neem coated urea is slightly less soluble compared to prilled urea so chances of leeching loss in excess field moisture or during rainfall also reduces.
  3. Volatility Reduced: Due to coating of neem oil over urea prills, volatilization loss due to direct exposure to sun is also reduced when neem-coated urea is applied to soil.
  4. Nitrate Leeching Reduced: Nitrifying Bacteria present in soil convert Ammonical Nitrogen to Nitrate Nitrogen which is highly soluble in water and easily leach to lower depth of soil beyond the reach of crop roots. Neem-coated urea kills these bacteria and nitrate formation is checked hence no nitrate losses happens.
  5. Denitrification Reduced: In case of poor drainage and aeration conditions particularly in case of Paddy crop, Nitrate Nitrogen is reduced to Nitrogen gas and escape to atmosphere. When neem-coated urea is used, little or no nitrate is formed hence no chances of de-nitrification losses.
  6. Powder Formation Reduced: Powder formation occurs during manufacturing, transportation & handling of prilled urea. Under FCO 20% powder is permissible but due to light weight powder is generally blown away by wind while applying in field hence results in wastage or reduce NUE of urea. Neem coated urea due coating of neem oil, restrict the action of friction of urea prills and hence reduces formation of powder which adds to increase the Nitrogen use efficiency.

FCO Specifications
Parameter(By weight) %
Moisture 1.0 (Max)
Total Nitrogen 46.0 (Min)
Biuret 1.5 (Max)
Particle size <2.8 mm 90
Particle size >1 mm 80
Benzene Soluble 0.035 (Min)

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