HC Deb 16 March 1950 vol 472 cc1245-7
47. Mr. Hare

asked the Minister of Agriculture whether the Rationing Advisory Committee has yet completed its special review of the rationing system for pigs and poultry.

Mr. T. Williams

Yes, Sir, and after careful consideration the Government have decided that the scheme for rationing animal feedingstuffs must be continued for the time being. Even if it were a workable proposal to release cereal feedingstuffs from the ration while continuing to control protein, the supply prospects for cereal feedingstuffs are not sufficiently clear to allow such a step without risk of scarcity of certain types of cereal and consequent upsetting of the balance of the agricultural production programme. Since, however, during this winter, a proportion of the coupons issued has not been used I am able to announce that from 1st May next there will be increases in the rates of rations, mainly for pigs, in order that the existing supply of feedingstuffs can be fully used.

I will circulate details in the OFFICIAL REPORT, and I will arrange for a letter to be sent to the hon. Member on the special cases of disabled persons, about which he has written to my Department.

Mr. Hare

While thanking the right hon. Gentleman for his reply, which I am sure will give satisfaction in farming circles, may I ask him again whether he has been able to consider the case of smallholders with under one acre, who, at the moment, are not able to get any benefit out of the rationing scheme? Can he give me any assurance that he will assist that particular type of person?

Mr. Williams

Perhaps the hon. Gentleman will read the reply that I shall circulate.

Following is the statement:

Regular monthly rations for pigs under the "basic" or the extended scheme will be increased by amounts up to 50 per cent., depending on individual circumstances, together with increases in the farrowing sows allowance and the bonus on pigmeat delivered. It is hoped that this will enable a large number of pig breeders to go forward with plans to increase their stock numbers. The bonus issue on deliveries of eggs to packing stations will also be doubled.

There will also be an adjustment of dairy cow rations this summer, following discussions with the organisations concerned. Increases are being made in the monthly rations for dairy cows in August and September designed to lessen the fall in the output of milk in September, and a new allowance for September calving cows will be included.

The above changes will apply to Great Britain. Full details will be shown in the usual Press notice being released by the Agricultural Departments this week on the summer rates of rations.

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