From Grower to Consumer

Before the onion actually reaches your kitchen, a lot of things have happened. The onion is available at the supermarket or the greengrocer's throughout the year but the onion harvest only takes place in the summer and autumn.

Dutch onions are cultivated predominantly on clay soil. The best parcels/growers are selected so that a product is put on the market which offers the highest quality. The growers must also observe various guidelines regarding food safety, such as GlobalGAP (Good Agricultural Practice). A small part of the cultivation area consists of ‘planting’ onions;

small onions which are planted out in the spring and which grow into eating onions within a relatively short period of time. The majority of the cultivation area consists of ‘sowing’ onions, i.e. onions which are grown from seed. This takes more time, but ‘sowing’ onions keep much longer and in better condition than ‘planting’ onions. The onion harvest takes place from early July up to September inclusive. Some of the onions are processed straight from the field; others are stored to be used later on in the season. Onions, of course, are very suitable for long-term storage.

If someone decides to take a batch of onions out of storage so that they can be processed, this usually involves a lot of extra work. The onions are picked up at the growers in bulk trailers or crates. When they arrive in Oostdijk, they are dried and ventilated further (if necessary) and then processed. Processing means that all the little roots and loose skins are removed from the onions and then they are sorted according to size and quality. After this, the onions are ready to be packed.

To package the onions, M.B. Nieuwenhuijse has a state-of-the-art and largely automated packaging department at its disposal. Here, it is possible to pack the onions in every packaging medium imaginable. After they are packaged, the onions are ready to be distributed anywhere in the world.
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