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DA expects onion production to stand at 300K MT in 2024

The Department of Agriculture (DA) is expecting a “positive” local onion production this year.

In a news release on Friday, the DA said the volume of onion production for 2024 is projected at over 300,000 metric tons (MT).

This is higher than the more than 250,000 MT volume of production for the crop seen in 2023, according to data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

"We’re expecting positive production for the year,” said DA spokesperson Arnel de Mesa.

De Mesa, however, said the presence of harabas or fall army worm has slightly affected yield, but the pest’s impact on onion production has been minimized “by the pro-active efforts of the national and local government.”

The DA said that only 8% of the total production area was affected by the pest.

"With the pro-active efforts of the national and local government, the effect is considered negligible,” said De Mesa.

The DA emphasized the importance of regular monitoring of onion farms to immediately address any production challenges that may affect the quality and volume of harvest.

"Let us practice early reporting and monitoring of unusual events in the farms,” said DA Assistant Secretary Genevieve Velicaria-Guevarra.

For his part, Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI) Director Glenn Panganiban said the DA will provide a technical support program to onion farmers and agricultural extension workers to equip industry stakeholders with effective tools and knowledge in managing the production areas.

The DA added it will establish more storage facilities not only for onion but for other high value crops as well.

The Agriculture Department has ordered a temporary suspension of onion importation until May in a bid to prevent further depressing onion prices due to supply glut.—AOL, GMA Integrated News