HC Deb 20 February 1941 vol 369 cc288-9
52. Sir Stanley Reed

asked the Minister of Agriculture whether, with a view to stimulating the allotment movement, and the encouragement of good cultivators, he will consider giving holders security of tenure after the war, either in the form of permanent tenure, or agreed terms of not less than seven years?

Mr. Hudson

I am afraid that it would not be practicable to give effect to my hon. Friend's suggestion at the present time.

Sir S. Reed

Is my right hon. Friend aware that allotment holders are deterred from giving more attention to their allotments because of the insecurity which at present exists?

Mr. Hudson

I know of no evidence to that effect.

53. Mr. Parker

asked the Minister of Agriculture whether he will instruct war agricultural executive committees not to order farmers or smallholders to grow any crops which are now being largely produced on allotments and/or where there is an adequate supply?

Mr. Hudson

The only vegetable crop which war agricultural executive committees have been asked to order farmers and smallholders to grow is potatoes, and the greatly extended acreage to be obtained by these means is a vital part of the Government's food production policy. Substantially increased acreages of other vegetable crops, such as onions and carrots, are also to be secured from farmers and others as part of the same policy, but it has not so far been considered desirable to issue orders to grow these crops. The contribution to the nation's food supply of vegetable crops grown in allotments and private gardens, although appreciable and of vital importance, is by no means sufficient for our needs, and certainly not of such a volume as to exclude the production on commercial holdings.