“An eventful year in transport”

Our (Water) men from the expedition, Hessel van Helten and Jasper Meeuwes, look back on an eventful year full of challenges in transport and logistics.

Faiafood innovates with onions, garlic, and ginger

Under FAIA, Waterman Onions, Roussel Onions, Sawari Fresh International and Biesheuvel Knoflook have announced a far-reaching collaboration to develop innovative, surprisingly tasty food concepts based on fresh onions, ginger, and garlic.

Looking back at the onion growing season of 2021

Looking back on the onion growing season of 2021, now that (almost) all onions are off the land, buyers Remko Wilms, Jelmer Elzinga and Harmjan Hospers discuss their thoughts.

Wim’s harvest update

In this recurring column, we’ll hear from Wim Waterman. Familiar with all the ins and outs of the onion market, Wim is an excellent candidate to update us about the market. This week Wim’s talking about the harvest of the seed onions in the Netherlands.

The seed onion season is in full swing, and most of the Netherlands’ onions have already been harvested. But Wim sees a few challenges regarding the quality of the onions. “The plant onions specifically had many problems. Therefore, we switched to the seed onions as soon as possible, but we’ve noticed a higher-than-average percentage of losses even there. Bacteria rot is especially bad, often due to hail, extreme rainfall, or mildew because the bacteria need to get through the outer skin. The rot is still in the outer layer of the seed onions, but it will eventually spread into the core while in storage. Unfortunately, they require extra work, but eventually, we’ll be able to offer our customers good quality onions. And it’s a relief to see how the harvest is coming in. If the ground isn’t too hard, the growers can choose the best moment to harvest.”

Wim mentions the need to keep a close eye on the storage. “It’s going to be a long and difficult storage season, and we’ll have to monitor the quality constantly.” Fortunately for Wim, the Waterman purchasing team has recently received reinforcements. “Our buyers can offer growers good advice about storage,” Wim adds that the growers are free to do what they will with the advice. “They also have to start thinking about next seed onion season; which strains do they want to sow, and for what goal?” For advice, growers can contact our buyers personally or online via uienzaadonline.nl.

Wim expects that the export weeks for 2021 won’t beat the 40,000+ tones of 2020. “We could export much more if we had the transportation,” Wim explains that it’s not because of lack of demand. “Africa leads the way, but Asia and Central America are also buying many onions, and those are the main destinations for onion exports. That’s good news too because we had to wait a long time since the second half of last season.”

Would you like to read the full interview with Wim? Read more…

Is an onion germicidal?

Using a germination test to investigate whether an onion is germicidal

Waterman Onions has been setting up so-called germination tests for its (pool) growers for years. With a germination test, you can quickly investigate whether an onion is susceptible to sprouting. The onion is stimulated to grow ‘further’, so you can soon explore whether an onion is sensitive to germs. It can prevent problems, especially in a difficult growing season.

germination test - sprouting onionsSprouting onions after set up germination test It is a straightforward procedure: You fill a container with a layer of potting soil (approximately 5 cm). If there is still foliage on the onions, cut this off and place the onion 1/3rd part in the potting soil. Place the container in a warmer place (canteen, corridor with underfloor heating or in the windowsill) and water it occasionally so that the ground remains moist.

You will often notice within three weeks whether the onion is susceptible for sprouting. If that is the case, the onions will root in the potting soil, or a green blade will emerge from the onion. Isn’t this the case? Then you can happily store your onions!


You usually place a germination test around November, but from October till the beginning of January are still possible! Good luck!