HC Deb 24 July 1952 vol 504 cc733-4
29. Mr. E. Johnson

asked the Minister of Agriculture what acreage in England and Wales was sown to rye in 1939, 1951 and 1952, respectively; and what amount was harvested in 1939 and 1951.

Sir T. Dugdale

The areas harvested in 1939 and 1951 were respectively 12,900 acres and 50,400 acres, yielding 8,800 tons and 45,600 tons. Further areas of rye were sown in both years for green fodder. I regret that the figures for 1952 are not yet available, but I do not expect them to be materially different from 1951.

Mr. Johnson

Would my right hon. Friend consider encouraging the growing of more rye on land especially suitable for growing that crop, but unsuitable for the growing of wheat, in view of its value as a bread grain, thereby saving imports?

Sir T. Dugdale

Yes, Sir. As a matter of fact, discussions are proceeding between the National Farmers' Union and certain rye users with a view to increasing the production of that crop and thus, possibly, dispensing with imports.

Mr. G. Brown

Does not that answer give point to the request which I have made several times, that the right hon. Gentleman should really get down to a proper production policy for rye?