30. Mr. De la Bère
asked the Minister of Agriculture what steps the Government are taking to remedy the shortage of agricultural labour so that in an emergency the best returns may be rapidly obtained from the soil?
§ Mr. W. S. Morrison
I would refer my hon. Friend to the reply given on 12th April to my hon. Friend the Member for Honiton (Mr. Drewe).
Mr. De la Bère
Is it right, as Mr. Rowntree says, that agricultural labourers are paid 41s. per week, and how can the producer pay that in view of the present state of agriculture?
§ Mr. Morrison
That is a large question, with many assumptions in it. It is the fact that the General Secretary of the Agricultural Workers' Union has recently stated that during the last three years the wages of agricultural workers have increased by £2,300,000 per annum.
§ Mr. T. Williams
Does the wage increase bear any relation to the amount of the subsidy given by the Government?