Establish free, public cold storage facilities for onion farmers — KMP

The Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas proposed that the government provide public cold storage facilities that onion farmers can access and use for free. This, according to KMP, will provide a long-term solution to the logistics and storage problem that contributes to the increasing prices of onions.

“Kawalan at kakulangan ng mga cold storage ang isa sa pangunahing dahilan kung bakit napakataas ng presyo ng sibuyas ngayon.” We can also blame importation, smuggling and price manipulation for the exorbitant onion prices.”

In the immediate, there is a need to stop the rampant onion smuggling. Based on data, the Bureau of Customs only apprehends 10% of smuggled onions from China. The 90% are sold at high prices in retail markets. As of today, white onion sells high at P800 per kilogram and red onion sells for P550 to P600 per kilogram in local markets.

“Kasama sa mga pangunahing nagkokontrol at nagmamanipula sa presyo ng sibuyas mula sa farmgate hanggang sa retail ay malalaking traders na gumagamit ng mga cold storage warehouses para pag-imbakan ng sibuyas.”

“Binibili ng mga traders sa mas mababang presyo ang sibuyas mula sa mula sa mga magsasaka, at saka i-iimbak sa mga cold storage. Ilalabas o ibebenta lang ng mga traders ang sibuyas sa higit na mataas na presyo sa panahon na mataas ang demand. Matagal nang ganito ang kalakaran at alam na alam ito ng mga taga Department of Agriculture,” according to KMP chairperson emeritus Rafael Mariano. Mariano hails from Nueva Ecija, the country’s onion capital. The former legislator also scoffed at DA for its utter failure in addressing the runaway onion prices. “Subukan naman ni DA Deputy Spokesperson Rex Estoperez na mag-budget at mamalengke para malaman niya na hindi na katanggap-tanggap ang presyo ng sibuyas.”

“Malinaw na may over-pricing sa sibuyas. Manipulasyon sa presyo ang pangunahing dahilan ng pagtaas ng presyo nito. Malawakang pandaraya sa masang konsyumer ang patuloy na pagtataas ng presyo ng sibuyas kahit pa nagsimula na ang anihan ngayong Disyembre.

“Labis-labis na tubo ang kinikita ng mga malalaking traders, importers, pati na mga smugglers dahil sa napakamahal na presyo ng sibuyas,” the KMP leader added.

“Onion reaches consumers at a high price due to several layers from the farm to the retail stores. Price manipulation adds to the already wide gap between farmgate and retail prices. Last year, onion sold at an average price of P120/kg even though the farmgate price is at P54/kg.”

Based on PSA data for 2020 the country’s major onion-producing regions are Ilocos, Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon, and MIMAROPA.

By type, bulb onions comprise 79% of the total area or 14,453 hectares. Shallots take up 21% or 3,938 hectares. From 2011 to 2020, the average annual growth in production is 10.72% (128,837 MT to 229,539 MT) while the area planted has an average annual growth of 4.91% or 14,641 hectares to 18,391 hectares. ###

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s