The National Horticultural Research Institute (NIHORT) was first established as the National Fruit and Vegetable Research and Development Centre (NFVRDC) with the assistance of UNDP/FAO Project NIR/72/007. By the Federal Government Agricultural Research Institutes Establishment Decree Order No. 35 of June 1975, the Centre metamorphosed into the National Horticultural Research Institute (NIHORT) along with other Agricultural Research Institutes. The Institute is under the coordination of the Agricultural Research Council of Nigeria (ARCN).
The Institute has 1,6 ha of land with the headquarters on 350 ha of land at Ibadan, Oyo state; a substation on an 810ha of land in the humid forest zone of Okigwe in Imo State and second substation on a 310ha of land at Bagauda in the Guinea Savannah zone of Kano, Kano State. NIHORT has an experimental station on a 126 ha of land in the Sudan Savannah zone of Dadinkowa in Gombe State also another on a 75 ha of research land at Riyom in the mid altitude sub-tropical/temperature zone of Jos in Plateau State.
The institute has the mandate to conduct research into genetic improvement, production, processing, storage, utilization and marketing of fruits, vegetables, spices and ornamentals plants of both nutritional and economic importance.
The Research activities of the Institute are carried out under the following programmes:
- Citrus Improvement Programme
- Fruits Improvement Programme
- Vegetable Improvement Programme
- Spices Improvement Programme
- Floriculture Improvement Programme
- Farming Systems Research and Extension Programme
- Product Development Programme
Other Support Departments includes:
- Planning, Monitoring & Evaluation department
- Human Resources Department
- Information and Documentation Department
- Finance and Account Department