On April 20, 2023, the University Business Linkage (Technology Transfer Office) at South Eastern University of Sri Lanka (SEUSL) signed a Research Collaboration Agreement (RCA) with Serendib Organic Holdings Private Limited. The RCA pertains to the "SafeCrop NANO" eco-friendly nanoemulsion formulation developed at the Faculty of Technology under the AHEAD RIC project, which is effective in managing Fall Armyworms and other Lepidoptera pests.

Scholarly studies highlight that higher education institutions have a key role to play as agents of economic, social and cultural development in their located regions. This is beneficial both to the engaged university as well as to the larger society. In this backdrop, SEUSL is continuously extending its pivotal roles in the economic, social and cultural development of the region through several contributions.

This marks the third successful university-industry collaboration at SEUSL and is aimed at enhancing university-industry collaboration in green agriculture by exchanging state-of-the-art know-how, expertise, training, and commercialization endeavors, creating opportunities for farmers, and promoting regional economic development.

The SafeCrop NANO formulation is composed of plant essential oil extracts that offer good biodegradability and non-toxicity at the recommended applied dose. The formulation exhibits high stability, small particle size, and uniform dispersion, providing optimal and enhanced insecticidal effects. It can be delivered with minimal or no environmental impact or toxic effects on the surrounding flora or fauna. Additionally, the invention can be used as a tool in integrated pest management strategies, requiring no additional equipment or methodology. The UBL has taken measures to protect the intellectual property of this invention through patent and trademark prosecution.

The ceremony was presided over by Prof. (Dr.) A. Rameez, Vice-Chancellor of SEUSL, who conveyed sincere appreciation and extended his thanks to the researchers and industry collaborators who contributed towards the development and means of commercialization of the technology. Further, the Vice-Chancellor underscored the criticality of a synergistic relationship between academia and industry in realizing a meaningful impact on society.

The event was attended by various dignitaries, including Prof. MM. Fazil, Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Culture, Dr. ULA. Majeed, Dean of the Faculty of Technology and Inventor, Mr. MI. Nawfer, Registrar (Acting), Mr. CM. Wanniarachi, Bursar (Acting), Prof. MAM. Rameez, Director of the Office of Technology Services (OTS), Dr. MNA. Hinas, Director of UBL, Mr. SLM. Thahir, Deputy Director/Finance – OTS, Dr. Muneeb M. Musthafa, Head of Department of BST and inventor, Dr. ADNT. Kumara, Senior Lecturer and inventor, and Mr. AGMM. Nusaike, Manager UBL, the UBL Advisory Board, the UBL Faculty Coordinators, Academics, and the delegates of Serendib Organic Holdings Private Limited.

The SEUSL and Serendib Organic Holdings Private Limited collaboration will contribute significantly to the development of eco-friendly solutions for pest management in agriculture, promoting sustainable and efficient agricultural practices, and improving the economic prosperity of the region.