HC Deb 20 June 1961 vol 642 c1164
26. Mr. MacArthur

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will state his revised estimate of the cost of supporting the barley crop in Scotland for 1961–62, in view of the present depressed state of the market.

Mr. Leburn

The cost of deficiency payment for the 1961 barley crop depends upon the average U.K. market price during the year from 1st July next. It is too early to make any useful revision of the estimated cost of supporting this crop in Scotland.

Mr. MacArthur

Is my hon. Friend aware of the depressing effect on the barley market of barley imports, and is he aware further that barley imports during the first four months of this year were running at twice the rate of the comparable period last year and in recent weeks have risen even further?

Mr. Leburn

I understand that the National Farmers' Union yesterday submitted an application to my right hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade under the Customs Duties (Dumping and Subsidies) Act, to which my right hon. Friend will be giving urgent consideration.

Mr. Emrys Hughes

In view of the depression which exists among farmers who grow barley, would the Under-Secretary of State give us an indication of his long-term plans and tell us how he proposes to protect the barley growers from foreign competition?

Mr. Leburn

Not in Question and Answer here.

Mr. Hoy

Has the hon. Gentleman any intention of having a sliding scale for farming subsidies so that the better-off farmers will not get them?

Mr. Leburn

I think that the hon. Gentleman had better put that Question down.

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