§ 24. Mr. Hayman
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he will make a statement on his recent visit to Cornwall.
§ Mr. Soames
I have taken the opportunity provided by the Recess to visit various parts of England and Wales to meet people engaged in agriculture and to see their problems for myself. I was very glad to be able to include Cornwall and to see something of the high standard of farming in the county. I was impressed by the way farmers are making use of the grant schemes which are available to the industry, particularly the Small Farmer Scheme.
§ Mr. Hayman
Is the Minister aware that we are very pleased that he visited Cornwall and thought the standard of farming so high, but will he remember that he told a constituent of mine that he was still learning a lot about the Agriculture (Small Farmers) Act? Will he try to expand the provisions of the Act or introduce fresh legislation applicable to viable farms under 20 acres in size, which are such a feature of the Cornish industry?
§ Mr. Soames
It is certainly true that I am learning a lot. I do not dispute that. However, at the moment our advisory services are fully taken up with the existing Small Farmer Scheme, and I do not at present see scope for expanding it.