The supply of red onions in the country is enough to last until November, while that of white onions can last until September, an official of the Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI) said on Saturday.
"Ang supply ng pulang sibuyas ay tinatayang magtatagal hanggang Nobyembre habang ang puting sibuyas ay tinatayang magtatagal hanggang Setyembre," BPI spokesperson Jose Diego Roxas said in an interview on Dobol B TV.
Roxas said that projection may change. If needed, onions may be imported just to augment supply to ensure prices will remain stabilized, he said.
"Possible naman mabago ang pagtaya... Kung mag-i-import man, augmentative lang. Pandagdag lang sa kakulangan o pampuna sa kakulangan... Para mag-stabilize 'yung presyo pati ang supply," Roxas said.
(The projection may still change...If ever we import [onions], it will be augmentative, just to fill in a lack. This is to ensure that prices and supply will stabilize.)
"Sa ngayon, wala pong kongretong plano na mag-import talaga. Kumbaga hindi pa napag-desisyonan," he said.
(For now there is no concrete plan to import [onions]. It has not yet been decided.)
Currently, locally produced onions are selling between P180 to P200 per kilo, whether red or white, he added. The onions imported last January were already exhausted, Roxas said.
This already represents an increase over previous prices.
"Ang pinakadahilan po nu'n ay tumaas talaga ang farm gate price which is masasabi naman ho namin ay pabor sa mga magsasaka," Roxas said.
(The reason for the hike in prices [of onions] is the increase in farm gate price which we consider is favorable to farmers.)
The BPI executive said the current farm gate price of onions is P120 per kilo.
"'Yung pagtaas ngayon [ng presyo ng sibuyas] kasama na rin 'yung padating na tayo sa lean months. 'Yung pinakamataas na anihan ay nu'ng Abril. Ngayong Mayo, mga pahabol na lang ang inaani ngayon," Roxas added.
(The increase in prices [of onions] is also due to the fact that we are approaching the lean months. The harvest reached its peak last April. This May, only a few are being harvested.)
The prices of onions may go up or down in the coming months especially as the lean months approach, he said.
"Lahat naman ng posibilidad nandiyan. Puwede siyang tumaas, puwedeng bumaba [presyo ng sibuyas]," Roxas said.
(Onion prices may go up or down. The possibilities are there.)
The Department of Agriculture is monitoring the prices of onions and talk to stakeholders, he added.
—KG, GMA Integrated News