Gov't to roll out assistance for onion farmers, 2-month sugar buffer stock to lower prices

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, January 24) — The government will implement a program to assist onion farmers increase their yield in a bid to stabilize supply and bring down prices, Malacañang announced on Tuesday.

"We'll do this by increasing the area that is being planted to onions, number one," the Presidential Communications Office (PCO) quoted President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. as saying.

Marcos — who's also Department of Agriculture (DA) secretary — also wants to help onion seed producers generate high-quality seeds that will be distributed to farmers, the PCO added.

The DA earlier said onion prices are expected to drop from around ₱400 to ₱100-₱150 per kilogram when more than 5,000 metric tons (MT) of imported onions arrive this week.

READ: Imported onions to be sold this week

The DA will also establish a two-month buffer stock for sugar to prevent supply shortages in the future.

"Again [for] sugar, to cut down speculation, we are guaranteeing a buffer stock of two months. So hindi magkaka-shortage, hindi dapat tataas ang presyo [So there should be no shortage, prices should not increase]," Marcos said.

According to the PCO, the DA and the Sugar Regulatory Administration have recommended importing up to 450,000 MT of sugar, in accordance with the president's order to maintain a two-month buffer stock.