HC Deb 25 May 1966 vol 729 c458
28. Mr. Jopling

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how many contracts the Cereals Marketing Authority made for the 1965 crop for wheat and barley; how many tons were involved; and what proportion he estimates this is of the total crop.

Mr. Hoy

The latest estimates of contracts expected to qualify for payment are: Wheat, 27,900 contracts; 1,647,000 tons; 41 per cent. of estimated total sales. Barley, 35,640 contracts; 1,839,000 tons; 37 per cent. of estimated total sales.

Mr. Jopling

Would the hon. Gentleman agree that to take 41 per cent. of the wheat crop and 37 per cent. of the barley crop in the first year of a contract sales system for cereals is a magnificent testimony to the agricultural industry in taking up a new system from scratch? Does he not think that the waiting period for the contracts might be shortened in future?

Mr. Hoy

I agree with what the hon. Gentleman has said, in contrast, perhaps, to something that was said in Committee. I am delighted with the results. I will pay a little attention to his second point. I have not yet considered it, but will do so.