In his Accelerated Reclamation of Alkaline Argillaceous Soils of Azerbaijan, Professor Mukhtar Abduyev describes the tackling of a long-established problem which had enormous implications for Azerbaijan's security of food supply. The task was to find more efficient methods of reclaiming the saline soils that covered more than 60% of the republic's lowlands – some 2.5 million hectares were resistant to improvement. Existing methods of reclamation involved vast amounts of water for leaching and the construction of extensive drainage systems; these methods could take up to 10 years to become effective. Prof. Abduyev typically adopted a practical scientific approach, researching various methods of salt removal and their effect on soils and the crops to be grown in them. He was also a highly respected teacher and was directly involved in field investigations, at the same time providing leadership and valuable hands-on experience for graduate students and research workers. Prof. Abduyev's work was a major contribution to streamlining the vital work to bring more Azerbaijani land into effective crop and food production.