Sweet Onions - Production
Mild onions are grown completely separate to Moonrocks storage onion crops. They are grown in specially selected paddocks and are closely monitored throughout the whole growing process. Growing the crop on trickle tape allows each block to receive specialist attention in regards to fertilizer and irrigation needs. To achieve high quality and consistent product out of the paddock, extreme care and attention is shown to every facet of the growing process. Soil texture, bed formation and seed spacing are all vital and Moonrocks has worked hard to ensure that each crop is planted to ensure that each onion is given the optimum chance to grow.
Mild onions have to be hand harvested because they are softer than storage type onions. Although this is very labour intensive it assists in protecting the onions from bruising and other damage.
Harvest of mild onions occurs at set temperatures to minimize stress to the plant and bulb. This also assists the onion to maintain moisture which maintains the pyruvate to sugar ratio. Onions are harvested at a set percentage of tops down and are field graded to remove any dirt or broken onions before they go into storage. This also has the added effect of allowing airflow through the mild onions, a very important requirement for the drying or curing process.
Mild onions are stored in an open air storage shed once they have been suitably dried. Here they will sit for a short while until they are processed and sent to market. Strict timeframes and operation procedures are in place in this shed to ensure that full control is maintained over the mild onions. This is critical to ensure a consistent product to the end consumer and is audited as part of the certification system.
All onions falling within the specifications of mild onions must be sold in packaging showing the mild certification trademark. In shed testing, transport requirements and recommendations in respect to usage timeframes ensure that mild onions are consumed at their best making it an enjoyable experience every time.