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IN BICOL: DA to look for suitable planting area for onion

By Cyryl L. Montales

LEGAZPI CITY --- Due to the lack of local supply of onions, the Department of Agriculture (DA) Bicol announced on Friday, that they will be conducting trials on their research outreach stations to address the said issue.

“This year, our research outreach stations from the six provinces in Bicol will conduct trials to come up with a technology to make [the planting of] onions suitable in our region,” DA Bicol Information Officer Lovella Guarin stated.

Guarin said that Bicol is not listed as onion-producer due to the region’s climate.

“In 2021, DA Bicol held trials and demonstration studies about the suitability of onions in our region, thus it was found out in our high value crops development program that our climate is not suitable for its planting, due to our very wet and dry season,” Guarin stated.

Guarin admitted that there is an insufficient supply of onion in the region.

“That is why the prices of onions reached up to P400 to P600 per kilo, because most of our supplies are from the National Capital Region (NCR),” Guarin said.

On Jan. 6, a memorandum on onion importation was signed by President Marcos Jr. which authorizes the importation of 21,016 metric tons of the said agricultural product.

The importation of white and red onions was expected to arrive before Jan. 23 which was one of the government interventions to lower its market price, DA Bicol said.

Guarin imparted that planting onion bulbs at home could also be another alternative thus it will only produce one bulb with many leaves.

“In some provinces, the onion seed was planted in the pot and it triumphed,” Guarin stated.

“It will take at least 100 to 200 days to grow, that is why it is difficult to produce considering our climate, also onion is a biennial plant which takes up to two-years to flower and produce seeds,” Guarin added.

Guarin said that they were conducting research for technologies that might help local farmers to have locally produced onions. (PIA5/Albay)


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