HC Deb 03 February 1947 vol 432 cc1398-9
61. Lord Willoughby de Eresby

asked the Minister of Agriculture whether, in view of the importance of the poultry industry to this country and the Government's policy to further its expansion in due course, he will ensure that the industry is no longer counted or referred to as a subsidiary agricultural occupation by his Department.

Mr. T. Williams

I fully recognise the national importance of the poultry industry and can assure the noble Lord that if there are occasions on which it is described as "subsidiary" —and I cannot guarantee there will not be—the word is not used in any derogatory sense, but merely as a reflection of the fact that a large proportion of our egg production has been, and probably always will be, ancillary to the main farming enterprise on the holdings from which the eggs are produced.

Lord Willoughby de Eresby

In view of the fact that the poultry industry is a matter of major concern to a great number of people in this country—consumers as well as producers—does not the Minister think that the moment has arrived to raise the official status of the industry?

Mr. Williams

It is not my desire or the desire of my Department that we should relegate the production of eggs to a lower category than they really deserve.

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