HC Deb 21 October 1953 vol 518 cc1968-9
29. Mr. G. Darling

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies if he will give information about the first farming cooperative society to be formed in Malaya, the Kampong Enam Co-operative Farming Society; in particular, to what extent the 66 members own land additional to the 200 acres presented to the Society by the Government of Penang; what crops will be grown; and to what extent the Society is supervised by the Agricultural Department.

Mr. Lyttelton

The Society is the first of two which will develop about 400 acres of land reclaimed at a cost of $250,000. None of the members has previously owned any land. They will be paid wages by the Society while they are clearing the land and raising the first one or two crops—principally of padi. They will then receive their own plots, the best cultivators being given the first choice.

The chairman is a keen and capable leader who has received training at the Agricultural College, Serdang. He will be able to call on the advice and assistance of many Departments, including the Department of Agriculture.

Mr. Darling

Is the Minister certain that the operations of the Society are on such a scale as to guarantee its success, or are the holdings and the whole operation rather too small to be successful?

Mr. Lyttelton

It would indeed be a bold Minister who guaranteed success for every crop when agencies other than the Government enter into its success or failure.

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