HC Deb 25 June 1953 vol 516 c2091
35. Mr. E. L. Mallalieu

asked the Minister of Agriculture what steps he is taking to arrest the fall in the making of silage disclosed in the latest figures.

53. Brigadier Medlicott

asked the Minister of Agriculture if his attention has been drawn to the reduction in the total of silage made in Great Britain; if he will make a statement as to the causes of this; and what plans he has for encouraging an improvement in the position.

Sir T. Dugdale

I am aware of the slight reduction in the quantity of silage made in 1952 compared with the previous year. This result reflects the more favourable hay making conditions in 1952, and also the difficulties of adopting silage-making on the smaller farms without causing demands for labour and equipment beyond the resources of the holding. I am asking the National Agricultural Advisory Service to give particular attention to the ways and means by which the smaller farms can make good silage with the labour and equipment normally available.

Mr. Mallalieu

Would the right hon. Gentleman agree that this method of saving our most important crop offers perhaps the most economical and easily available method of saving money on imported feedingstuffs?

Sir T. Dugdale

Yes, I agree with that. I would inform the House that the actual fall in Great Britain as a whole during last year was a fraction of 1 per cent.

Mr. Noel-Baker

Is the number of our grass drying plants still increasing?

Sir T. Dugdale

Grass drying, as opposed to silage, is a different question altogether.