Oliver Bugarin 4 0 0 4 min to read

DA provides P100 million subsidies to onion growers and connects them to specific markets.

By increasing production toward self-sufficiency and guaranteeing that onion farmers’ cooperatives and associations (FCAs) have ready markets for their products, the Department of Agriculture (DA) has allocated more than PHP100 million in interventions to boost the nation’s onion industry.

According to the DA’s recently released Philippine Onion Industry Roadmap 2021–2025, in order to achieve self-sufficiency, the nation must boost production from 229,539 metric tons to 279,270 metric tons in five years by expanding planting acreage and productivity.

The DA High-Value Crops Development Program (HVCDP) has allotted PHP47.48 million for production support services for onion-planted areas, such as the provision of seeds, seedlings, and fertilizer.

Through the HVCDP, infrastructure for the production and post-harvesting of onions, irrigation network services, and agricultural production apparatus and equipment were also constructed and provided. The initiative also financed a bundle of technical training of PHP1.4 million and research into onion-producing activities worth PHP10.048 million.

Through the Enhanced Kadiwa Financial Grant in 2021, the DA-Agribusiness and Marketing Assistance Service (AMAS) also engaged FCAs in producing and marketing onions delivery trucks and hauling vans worth PHP6.1 million. The subsidy provided access to 60 new markets for the produce of the FCAs and at least 6,000 farmer members.

In addition, the DA-AMAS stated that as of August 28, 2022, it has already linked numerous FCAs with substantial customers for the delivery of around 82,442 kg of red, yellow, and white onions as well as shallots valued PHP3.228 million since February of this year.

The DA management regularly consults and engages with stakeholders, including farmer-leaders, traders, and purchasers, among others, to address the issues and challenges in the regional onion sector.

The DA has also advocated for manufacturing that is driven by demand.

Central Luzon, Ilocos, Mimaropa, and Cagayan Valley are the main onion-producing regions in the nation. Still, DA is considering collaborating with farmers in the Visayas and Mindanao regions to increase domestic onion output and help them with market linkage operations.

Onions are planted at the earliest, in September, and harvesting begins in December and lasts until June. As a result, higher onion prices are noticeable from July through November.

The key suggested interventions along the value chain are production clustering, seed support systems, infrastructure support, input subsidies, postharvest support facilities, and systemic interventions like consolidation centers, auction markets, and regulatory services. This information is based on the Onion Roadmap, a product of multi-stakeholder consultations.

A modern, competitive, and successful onion business is also envisioned in the roadmap, one that would deliver an inexpensive, sustainable, and high-quality supply of onions to fulfill rising domestic and export demand.

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