HC Deb 12 May 1960 vol 623 cc596-7
8. Mr. Wingfield Digby

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what percentage of our requirements of timber and wood products was imported in 1954 and 1959, respectively; and whether he will state the corresponding percentage of imports of foodstuffs which normally are produced by agriculture in the United Kingdom.

Mr. John Hare

About 90 per cent. of timber and wood products consumed in the United Kingdom was imported both in 1954 and in 1958, the latest year for which figures are available. Of those foodstuffs which farmers in the United Kingdom normally produce, a little more than one-third was imported in both years.

Mr. Digby

Do not those figures show it is most desirable that we should grow more of the timber we require in this country and that perhaps better use could be made of existing home-grown timber?

Mr. Hare

Of course, there will be a considerable rise in the output of homegrown timber during the next few years. Output will very definitely rise. I think all the steps we are taking to try to encourage the marketing of home-grown timber will bear result.