§ 51. Mr. Braine
asked the Minister of Agriculture what were the reasons for the delay in authorising the issue of an import licence for carrot seed to Harts Seed Growing Establishment, Rayleigh, Essex.
Mr. T. Williams
The delay, which I regret, in advising the Board of Trade not to issue an import licence for carrot seed required by the firm mentioned was due, in part, to an oversight and, in part, to the need to obtain further details from the applicants.
§ Mr. Braine
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the delay was of some 10 weeks' duration and could he impress upon the President of the Board of Trade the necessity of avoiding delays in this kind of transaction?
If I understood the hon. Gentleman correctly, he said that the delay was 10 weeks. As a matter of fact, the original request from the firm was on 5th February, 1951, and was, unfortunately, not dealt with until 28th February, which was scarcely 10 weeks.
§ Mr. Braine
But the licence which, after all, is the important thing, was not issued until some 10 weeks later.
Yes, but this firm asked for varieties of carrot seed. We wanted to know exactly which of them was really necessary, since there were substantial home stocks of the carrot seed required by the firm.