§ MR. GULLAND (Dumfries Burghs)
I beg to ask the hon. Member for South Somerset, as representing the President of the Board of Agriculture, whether he is aware that on 24th April the Board issued without notice an order prohibiting the import into Scotland of esparto grass except under licence; if he will state the reasons for this order; whether it is now withdrawn; and whether he will take steps to prevent in future the issue of an order that causes annoyance and expense to importers and users of esparto grass.
§ THE TREASURER OF THE HOUSEHOLD (Sir EDWARD STRACHEY,) Somerset, S.
We have been in communication with the Customs on the subject to which my hon. friend refers. It appears that esparto grass is imported in the form of fibre for paper-making and other manufactures and it is therefore not to be regarded as coming within the provisions of the Foreign Hay and Straw Order, 1908. Before the Board could arrive at a decision in the matter, it was necessary that full inquiry should be made. They regret that any inconvenience should have been caused to those concerned.