Some Filipinos expressed frustrations and concern over recent reports about the shortage of garlic and onion in the country.
They cited that most Filipino dishes are not complete without onion and garlic— from menudo, adobo, mechado, and pancit, among others, most use these ingredients.
“So paano na ang Noche Buena, Media Noche? Walang Guisado?” a Twitter user asked.
“Lahatin niyo na lahat ng tanim sa ‘Bahay Kubo’,” a Twitter user quipped.
“Sibuyas, bawang. Sunod na nyan kamatis luya,” an online user speculated.
Some were also worried as they might be unable to cook their favorite dishes.
“Oh nooo. Pano na buttered garlic shrimp at sinangag!!!!” a Twitter user wrote.
“Goodbye bistek at adobo na ba? Shortage of salt, onions and now garlic naman. It won’t shock me if the solution lies in importation. A high volume of imports opens up opportunities to loot money. Unity pa din!” an online user frustratingly said.
Garlic, onion shortage
The Department of Agriculture has projected that local farm output of onions and garlic will not be enough to meet the expected demand until the last quarter of the year.
The demand for garlic in the year’s second half is 73,146 metric tons, while the supply is just about 37,000 metric tons, based on the DA-Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI) data.
The agency said it is still insufficient even if the country imports additional supplies.
“We are not sufficient at all pagdating to po sa garlic, we are dependent on the importation,” Agriculture Undersecretary Kristine Evangelista said during the plenary hearing.
“Insufficiency is a problem we have been facing, and improvement in production yield and quality of our garlic is something we also have to work on,” she continued.
Meanwhile, there is also a scarce supply of white onion in Metro Manila, Ilocos Region, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, Mimaropa, Central Visayas, and Northern Mindanao, as noted by DA-BPI.
The agriculture department previously admitted that there is a lack of supply of white onions but added it is thinking of importing to fill in the demand in the market.
“Initially kasi, kailangan natin ng availability tsaka siyempre dapat mababa ang presyo, kaya ang tinitingnan natin ang pag-angkat,” Evangelista said on August 10.
Some fast food chains announced that they are experiencing supply issues, particularly on onions.
Celebrity vlogger Judy Ann Santos made headlines last week after expressing her shock at the price increase of white onions from P40 to P550 per kilogram.
“Pasensya na…hindi talaga ko maka-move on…yung dati naming kasing 40 pesos per kilo, naging 550 na! Paano naman akong hindi magpapaka OA! Onion soup, onion rings, at kung ano ano pa!” Judy Ann said.