Improved onion quality and productivity
Productivity and quality of the onions in Bangladesh is affected in particular by the quality of the onion seed, and pest and disease levels. The average Bangladeshi onion growers have limited access to improved seeds and fertilisers, limiting their achievable yields and exposing their crop to diseases and rot. Currently, only 10 percent of the total seed requirement in Bangladesh is met by certified, high-quality onion seed. The remaining 90 percent is being met by farmer saved seeds. These seeds are then used as planting material during the next season. These low-quality onions are often affected by various bacterial, viral and fungal diseases which cause yield loss and deteriorate the storability of the potatoes. The Bangladeshi onion growers lack technology, knowledge and support. In the rural areas extension services are hardly available.
What do we do?
Growers’ access to high-quality onion seed and their improved knowhow and practices related to crop health needs, improve the storability and value adding capacities of the onions.
The following activities are therefore implemented during the project period:
- Demonstration fields are established at 10 selected sites:
- 7 demo fields are located in Faridpur region involving 13 growers ;
- 3 demo fields are located in Pabna region involving 14 growers;
- The seeds are supplied for free to the 27 participating growers by consortium partners Bejo Zaden and Lal Teer Seed. During the growing season of 2022 each demo field is 3,2 acres of which:
- 2 acres are planted with the Dutch onion seed varieties Red Passion, BGS 403, Red Village, BGS 359 and Red Dragon;
- 1,2 acres are planted with the Bangladeshi seed varieties Lal Teer King, Lal Teer Hybrid and baseline variety Taherpuri.
The demonstrations are implemented during two consecutive years as a dry-season crop in rotation with jute.
- During several stages of the cultivation cycle participating onion growers receive technical support and training on:
- prevention of pests and diseases and effective control where necessary;
- proper harvesting and recommended post-harvest handling.
- The results at each demonstration field are monitored and assessed.
Bejo Zaden is a major horticultural seed supplier with global outreach and experience in Southeast Asia including Bangladesh. Bejo breeds and produces a range of onion varieties suitable for Bangladesh. Together with the local partner Lal Teer, Bejo will set up demonstrations of new onion varieties and provide training to farmers and distributors.
Waterman Onions is a leading Dutch onion company, that handles, packages and delivers around 150,000 tonnes of onions across the world each year. The company has expertise in all steps of onion postharvest handling, storing, packaging, distribution and marketing, and will transfer this knowledge to its counterparts in Bangladesh. Waterman Onions will be responsible for training onion sector stakeholders such as medium farmers, traders, storage providers and agriculture extension workers.
Deltadesh is a Dutch-owned private company headquartered in Dhaka, Bangladesh. The company is specialized in procurement, contracting and implementation of turn-key projects in different sectors, including agriculture. Deltadesh will act as the local support office and will assist with the data collection for monitoring and evaluation of the project’s progress and impact.