HC Deb 23 July 1968 vol 769 cc409-39

Order read for resuming adjourned debate on Question [17th July]. That the Meat and Livestock Commission Levy Scheme (Confirmation) Order 1968, a draft of which was laid before this House on 2nd July, be approved.—[Mr. Cledwyn Hughes.]

Question again proposed.

10.10 p.m.

Mr. Peter Mills (Torrington)

Whatever may be said about this scheme, or about the Meat and Livestock Commission, the problem which looms up in my mind is the difficult climate into which the scheme finds itself launched. Many farmers and those engaged in the slaughtering of animals and the retailing of meat are hostile to the whole set-up of the scheme. The Minister must take into account the climate and the reaction and seek to answer the doubts which many have before proceeding with the scheme. Unless the Minister does something about the climate as a matter of urgency, the scheme will fail.

People are concerned about the growth in the number of bodies that are being set up and in the number of levy schemes. This was the reaction from both sides of the House during the previous debate on this subject, and there has been the most frantic lobbying by certain sections of the business community. In a sense I can understand this.

I suggest that the most stringent economies must be applied. The administration costs of the scheme must be kept to the minimum. We must beware of putting aside such schemes and rejecting this scheme out of hand, for I am not prepared to return to the jungle of the free-for-all that existed before the war. Many hon. Members will remember the difficulties of the farming community in the past, and I am not prepared to abandon these schemes completely.

I ask the Minister to impress upon the Meat and Livestock Commission the need to keep the levies as low as possible. It is right too that each year the Commission should come to the House to ask for an increase should this be necessary, and that there should be a full debate on the subject. I am not prepared to give themcarte blanche so that they can go ahead. The Minister must do everything in his power to keep down the cost of administration so that the levies do not rise. He must make an effort to come to terms with the fears of those who are objecting to the scheme.

Without the co-operation of all sides in the industry, the scheme will fail. The Minister should demonstrate quite clearly the advantages of the scheme; and that it will be worth while to support it by means of the levies. I suggest that a baby born like this, so soon after the violent reaction we have had to the Agricultural Training Board, is not a very good omen for the Commission: in the long run, no confidence means no success.

One of the most glaring omissions is the fact that these levies will not be made on imported meat. This is a very serious matter and—

Mr. Speaker

Order. We are now discussing an Order. The hon. Member knows that he cannot amend it. He can denounce it, but he cannot amend it.

Mr. Mills

Then I denounce it. This is a very serious mistake, and the Minister should seriously consider seeking powers to make imported meat pay the levy as well—

Mr. Speaker

Order. Perhaps the hon. Gentleman does not understand. He can denounce but he cannot amend. He is now seeking to amend.

Mr. Mills

Then I had better leave that subject. I have made my point to the Minister.

Mr. R. J. Maxwell-Hyslop (Tiverton)

Would not the answer be for the Minister to withdraw this Order and then introduce an Order in the form my hon. Friend recommends?

Mr. Speaker

Order. The hon. Gentleman can conduct his own campaign.

Mr. Mills

For my part, Mr. Speaker, that would be perfectly in order for me, but whether you would consider it so is an entirely different matter.

We have had many letters on this question of the levy from butchers and those who operate slaughterhouses, but I suggest that those who criticise must at least give us an alternative, and that is not so easy. I suggest that the levies would be considerably greater if they were not taken at this point; and that the slaughterhouse men and others who are killing those animals must seek to recoup the levies from the farmer and from the retailer. Otherwise, if we have these collection points from all the three parties concerned the levies will grow very considerably, and that would be wrong.

In considering how the levies will be spent I accept the necessity for research. There is the taking over of P.I.D.A. and the beef recording body and the sums of money going into research, but private enterprise research works on a profit motive which would quickly bring down the chopper on a scheme that was proving unsuccessful. I trust that these levies will not be wasted on too costly and too extended schemes of research. My particular criticism of P.I.D.A. is that it has taken far too long with its research schemes. I hope that the Commission will not take such a leisurely course, but will spend these moneys wisely.

I trust that there will be no duplication of advice and research. It will be obviously a waste of the levies if the N.A.A.S. continues to do the same work that the Commission is to do. Many people fear that unless action is taken to avoid it, there will be a vast amount of duplication of research with the consequent wasting of the moneys of the farmers, the butchers and all those who contribute. This is an important point.

Paragraph 4(2)(d) of the Schedule refers to a levy of 2s. for pigs. This is fairly high. I must declare an interest as I rear pigs. If I can make 10s. or 12s. profit on a pig I consider that I am doing fairly well. I have never been very good at mathematics, but I should have thought that the 2s. levy is a fifth of my profit. That is a serious inroad into the profit on the production of pig-meat. The Minister should look carefully at the Schedule again. Although 6s. may not be too high a levy for beef the levy for pigs is certainly high. Paragraph 5(5) says that there is no appeal. That seems disastrous. Surely in the case of dispute one ought to be able to appeal to the Ministry and to have a fair hearing. This point should be cleared up.

I hope that the Minister will try to alter this most unfavourable climate into which it is sought to launch the Commission. I hope that the money will be spent wisely and sensibly. Consultation is absolutely vital to the success of the scheme. I have already heard from some bodies outside that there has been lack of consultation. I hope that there will be no duplication of research. The Minister must think again about the problems of imported meat.

The Commission and these levies start in a very difficult climate. If we want this scheme to be successful a considerable amount of pruning will have to be done in administration costs. I am not prepared to dismiss the scheme. Farmers and those concerned in the industry will willingly pay these levies if they see that they will do something for the industry, the trade and the consumer. I hope that the Minister will be able to answer some of the fears which I and people outside have, but I hope that the scheme will be a success.

Mr. Speaker

May I advise the House that it will not be out of order to refer to the Order that we are discussing.

10.24 p.m.

Mr. Stanley Orme (Salford, West)

I met representatives of the wholesale meat salesmen's association in my area last weekend. I am completely in favour of a Meat and Livestock Commission. It is absolutely necessary. It will protect the consumer by ensuring that labelling of meat is clear and definite. I make no bones about that particular point. [An HON. MEMBER: "That makes a very meaty subject."] As one of my hon. Friends says, "That makes a very meaty subject".

I have two questions to ask my right hon. Friend the Minister, and I am sure that he will be prepared to answer them. First, why has the primary producer been excluded from the levy? Many people believe that the producer, namely, the farmer, should bear some of the burden and that it should not be left purely to the market forces to see that the cost is evenly distributed.

Secondly, may I ask my right hon. Friend why imported cattle are excluded.

Mr. Speaker

It is all right for the hon. Gentleman to ask the question, but the Minister could not answer it and be in order.

Mr. Orme

I appreciate the point, Sir. We are dealing with a levy on beef.

Mr. Speaker

Order. The parent Act sets up the Commission. The Order imposes a levy. We are talking about a levy.

Mr. Orme

I am talking about a levy on beef, and I am asking why imported beef is excluded. Those are my two questions.

10.26 p.m.

Sir Frank Pearson (Clitheroe)

I thank the Minister for having adjourned the debate last Thursday, thus giving us all a chance to speak now and, even more important, to read the speech he made then. Having read it with the greatest care, I am now much more doubtful about the Order than I was before he made his speech.

The Minister started his speech by saying that as a matter of principle both sides were more or less agreed. Then he referred to the proceedings in Committee on the Agriculture Act. This is so, but the right hon. Gentleman underestimates the serious reservations that many of us had in Committee on certain points. We are very suspicious about the wideness of the powers being granted to the Commission. We were especially worried because we felt that the committees set up under the scheme may not be able to perform their function.

The fact that we are debating the Order tonight, and that there is so much hostility to the Order, shows beyond all doubt that the committees have failed. There has been a lack of communication somewhere. If the scheme is to be successful, something must be amended to ensure that the channels of communication work better in the future than they have up to this time.

I shall not dwell on the criticisms of the Order which have been made by hon. Members on both sides. It all comes dawn to criticism of pinning the levy to the point of slaughter. Because of that, imported beef escapes the levy. This is totally wrong. If this is to be a permanent feature of the scheme, it will not be a success. The Minister must think again and introduce something totally different.

Schedule 1 to the Act outlines the responsibilities of the Commission. They cover a multitude of subjects, only one or two of which have anything to do with retail meat. The rest concern such matters as artificial insemination and a hundred and one different things concerned with the production of meat. It is, therefore totally illogical that the whole levy should fall on one section.

When the Minister explained the scheme to us he pointed out that no less than three-quarters of the expenditure from the levy would be allocated to the pig development scheme. This is extraordinary. We debated the Meat and Livestock Commission for about six or seven days in Committee and covered the whole aspect of meat production and retailing. Then the Minister comes along with an Order for a levy three-quarters of the expenditure for which is to deal with pigs, for which we have had a development scheme for years. The pig meat industry is one of the most coherent parts of the meat trade, and the levy could have been placed on it to raise the money to deal with pig development. That is where the money should have come from.

What is the remaining quarter of the levy to be spent on? I think that the Minister said that it was to be spent on evaluation in the interests of producing meat most suited to the requirements of the housewife. It is a lot of "boloney" if that is all he is to use that £500,000 for. I should like to think that the housewife knows good meat when she sees it. I am very doubtful whether she needs this great Commission, with all its committees, levies, forms and records to tell when meat is good and when it is not. We have the finest meat trade in the world, gentlemen, and we produce the finest meat in the world. Our butchers know more about meat than anybody else does.

Mr. Speaker

Order. Mr. Speaker is a patriot, too, but we must come to the Order.

Sir Frank Pearson

I entirely accept your Ruling, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Robert Maclennan (Caithness and Sutherland)

On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. When the hon. Gentleman turns his back on the House and addresses his hon. Friends as "gentlemen" he denies hon. Members on this side of the House the opportunity to hear what he is saying.

Mr. Speaker

The hon. Member for Caithness and Sutherland (Mr. Maclennan), at this hour of the day, is a little hypersensitive.

Sir Frank Pearson

It would be a matter of great grief to me if I felt that hon. Gentlemen opposite had not heard what I said, because they would have missed something. But I feel that I was getting a little wide of the Order.

One part of the Order rather concerns me, because it illustrates how easy it is for bureaucracy to take control. With the best will in the world we may be trying to improve the standard of the meat the housewife gets, and wishing the scheme to be a success, but I draw attention to paragraph 7 of the Schedule, which lays down all the records that must be kept by those who slaughter cattle and sheep. That may not be a great burden for a big slaughterhouse or local authority slaughterhouse, but it is a burden for the small family butcher who slaughters his own meat.

It is a great pity that that type of slaughterer-retailer should be asked to keep all the very intricate records and then should be open to visits from inspectors who check the records for two years past. This is the sort of thing that makes the trading life of a small trader intolerable.

Mr. Paul Hawkins (Norfolk, South-West)

My hon. Friend may remember that in Committee the Government made it quite clear that it was their intention to do away with small slaughterhouses and retail butchers.

Sir Frank Pearson

My hon. Friend is quite right. This is what we all suspect. We look at these schemes, with all their intricate administrative provisions, and think that the Government are hostile to the small man. They know that, once this scheme gets going, in the end the small man will say, "I cannot carry on in business" and will leave it. This is why I dislike these schemes so intensely and the bureaucratic control laid upon the small trader. But I shall not labour the point. I am certain that many of my hon. Friends will make it.

Mr. J. T. Price (Westhoughton)

I hope the hon. Gentleman will not mind if I remind him of the Slaughterhouses Act, which was passed by Parliament under Conservative direction. The central purpose of that Act was to concentrate slaughtering of animals in this country. It was supported by all parties, but was placed on the Statute Book by a Tory Government.

Sir Frank Pearson


Mr. Speaker

Order. I hope the hon. Member for Clitheroe (Sir Frank Pearson) will not yield to temptation but that he will return to the Order.

Sir Frank Pearson

I shall not be turned aside from debating the Order, Mr. Speaker, by the irrelevant remarks of the hon. Member for Westhoughton (Mr. J. T. Price).

I return to the point I made earlier. If this scheme is to be successful, the committees will have to work a good deal more intelligently than they have up to now. They must work in the closest collaboration with the trade. I hope never again to see such an Order under the Act which encounters so much hostility in the House. If the Commission does not manage to achieve that collaboration, then it is the Commission that will have to go.

10.37 p.m.

Mr. Richard Body (Holland with Boston)

There is only one promising feature of the Meat and Livestock Commission. This is the appointment of Sir Rex Cohen as Chairman. He brings to the Commission great experience of both marketing and livestock. However, there must be real misgiving about the staffing of the Commission.

Each region is to have a director. Under each regional director there are to be specialists for beef, pigs and sheep, and under the regional director there will also be fieldsmen who will visit every farm in the land. Most of these officials will be recruited from P.I.D.A. and the Beef Recording Association. It is significant to look at the salary scale. The fieldsmen are paid £1,100, rising to £1,700, and the regional directors at £1,700, rising to £2,300. The Commission will have to pay far higher salaries than that if it is to attract the kind of man whose advice will be respected by the farmer.

It cannot be said that these inadequate salaries are the result of shortage of funds. The Commission follows P.I.D.A., and from those who produce pigs £6,675,000 has been extracted in 10 years. My hon. Friend the Member for Torrington (Mr. Peter Mills) and I, and the other pig producers, have paid £850,000 in one year alone. Much of this huge sum—

Mr. Speaker

Order. The salaries of the Commission and the amount the hon. Gentleman has himself contributed, apart from the slaughterer's levy, are out of order.

. Mr. Body

I hope that the Commission will not repeat the same mistakes as the P.I.D.A. and duplicate its efforts. This has been done on a considerable scale. What is the point of the Meat and Livestock Commission having fieldsmen going to every farm and, at the same time, the N.A.A.S. sending livestock advisory officers to the same farms? It is the view of many farmers that the advice of neither will match the advice which they can now get from their own veterinary surgeons, or from the Fatstock Marketing Corporation and other technical sales representatives.

The same goes for research. The M.L.C. plans to spend a quarter of its income on research. If this research is done on the same lines as that done by P.I.D.A., we can be sure that the Commission will dabble in work which others have been able to do more efficiently. For 10 years the emphasis has been put by P.I.D.A. on the bacon pig and this research is now to be continued by the Commission. Yet, despite 10 years of research, we still do not fulfil our bacon quota and the bacon pig is only marginally better than it was when P.I.D.A. began. Almost all the improvements which have been made so far can be attributed to individual breeders and the large-scale breeding companies and companies like Walls and B.O.C.M. All the while P.I.D.A. has overlooked the importance to the butcher and the housewife of the pork pig.

P.I.D.A. has definitely not given the farmer his money's worth and now the butcher is to be fleeced of an even greater sum. The butcher can be sure that he will not get his money's worth out of the Commission any more than the farmer got his money's worth out of P.I.D.A. The best argument for this scheme is that it will mean the demise of P.I.D.A. I hope that it will also mean the demise of many of the ideas of P.I.D.A.

10.43 p.m.

Mr. James Johnson (Kingston upon Hull, West)

I enter this "National Farmers' Union" meeting with some trepidation, as I am not even a pig farmer, unlike some hon. Members opposite. I believe that tonight the Opposition would like the House to buy a pig in a poke. I am moved to speak in the debate because of the tirade from hon. Members opposite in the debate on Wednesday night, particularly the contribution which was made around midnight by the hon. and gallant Member for Knutsford (Sir W. Bromley-Davenport), who was most hostile towards the Government.

Much of the sound and fury from hon. Members opposite signifies but little. Like other hon. Members, I have met butchers who have made their feelings known to me. They have a case and the Opposition have stated it very well tonight, but what substance is there in this case? To what extent are the butchers being victimised and persecuted? Is the levy such an iniquitous cost increase to the industry?

The hon. and gallant Member for Knutsford waxed at his most eloquent about this. Like many others, he told me that the levy was one among many cost increases being imposed by this "vicious, wicked" Socialist Government on industry. I do not believe it. It is my belief, and I think that my right hon. Friend shares my view, that the levy will be diffused over the whole of the meat and livestock industry and will not be concentrated on the point of slaughter.

I do not intend to get involved with a very clever dialectician on my own side of the House, but last week my hon. Friend the Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Michael Foot) talked about market forces. He does not believe in market forces. He is a good Socialist. I am a good Socialist and I do not believe in market forces.

Mr. Speaker

Order, we can leave market porters out of this.

Mr. Johnson

I will not pursue this, Sir.

Mr. Speaker

I apologise. The amplification is defective. I understand that the hon. Gentleman said "market slaughterers".

Mr. Johnson

I feel a lot better after that.

I want to refute the nonsense talked on the benches opposite with some facts. If the whole cost of this levy, I believe it to be £1.85 million, were passed on to the consumer, and I have had these figures checked with the highest authority, it would mean an increase of one-seventh per lb. on retail butchers' sales. This is said to be iniquitous, wrecking the whole industry, causing unemployment and destitution to butchers and their families.

This is what was said last Wednesday. [AN HON. MEMBER: "Who said that?"] The hon. and gallant Member for Knutsford. He often says what the other side feels, but does not say. The levy is not merely on the butcher, not a mere addition to the costs of the industry, but, as an hon. Member said last week, a collective investment in its efficiency. It is hoped that the industry will respond and help the Commission in its work and apply the results of that work quickly.

My hon. Friend the Member for Salford, West (Mr. Orme) spoke about labelling and the way in which this work will help his wife, and all our wives, to shop more efficiently and get better value for money. This is an important issue which has been completely lost in the sectional, emotional appeal from Members speaking for the National Farmers' Union, on behalf of their friends. It is not in the best traditions of the House to lobby in this way. I speak on behalf of the whole industry, and on behalf of all the women in the country.

Those who read last week's proceedings will see that the right hon. Member for Grantham (Mr. Godber) the Opposition official spokesman, has never opposed the Commission, or the fact that the Government must get the money by levy to operate it. The most convenient way of getting the levy is at the point of slaughter. That is indubitable and the arguments of the Opposition have not convinced me. Once again, I say that it has bought a magnificent pig in a poke.

Mr. J. B. Godber (Grantham)

The hon. Gentleman has quoted me, and I do not dispute anything that he has quoted. Would he explain why he has not supported me in regard to a levy on imported meat, because the very things about which he was talking surely make it right to impose it on imported meat, too?

Mr. Johnson

The Minister is better able to deal with these points. The importer gains little by the levy. It is the home producer who gains in the home sector, as well as the population of the country—our wives. Those who gain should contribute to the cost of the levy.

10.50 p.m.

Mrs. Jill Knight (Birmingham, Edgbaston)

I am often infused with resentment when hon. Gentlemen presume to speak on behalf of my sex. I strongly resent the implication that the housewife who does the family shopping is a bird-brained nitwit who does not know the difference between a chop and scrag end.

Having listened to the debate, and read as much as I could about the previous one, I gather that it is seriously suggested that the slaughterhouse operator must pay the levy partly so that the meat can be labelled clearly, so that the housewife will not be misled by the butcher about the quality of the meat. Whereas the large majority of housewives know perfectly well about the quality of the meat that they are buying, the housewives who have not yet learned to do so have ready advisers in their butchers. [An HON. MEMBER: "And their husbands."] Their husbands may well come into it at a later stage, but when the transaction is being carried through, the butcher, who knows well the quality of the meat, is ready to advise. This is a libel both on the housewife and on the butcher.

We housewives were told some years ago that we did not have enough sense to know about eggs, and so we had the great egg farce. Now, the Egg Marketing Board has been unscrambled, as it were—

Mr. Speaker

Order. I intervene with trepidation, but I must point out that we are discussing a levy on slaughtering.

Mrs. Knight

I apologise, Mr. Speaker. I was merely drawing what seemed to me to be a reasonable point of difference and similarity between the two cases. I feel strongly that when money is being collected for doing a job of this kind, one should consider whether the job is necessary at all.

Mr. Cranley Onslow (Woking)

Is my hon. Friend aware that part of the labelling which is proposed is categorisation of cookability and eatability? Would she agree that the cookability in meat depends upon the excellence of the cook as much as on anything else, and that eatability depends on factors like the state of one's teeth? These factors are hardly under the control of the Commission.

Mrs. Knight

My hon. Friend has made a splendid intervention. The numerous factors go far beyond what it is possible to specify on a label attached to a piece of meat.

When trying to impose a levy scheme of this kind, the Government should make sure that they have the full co-operation, agreement and understanding of the people involved. I understand that the National Federation of Meat Traders' Associations feels strongly that its members have not had a fair deal and that the fairness of the levy is very much in question, although the Government promised time and again that when the levy was imposed it would be a fair one. I understand that the Federation feels strongly that it is not a fair levy.

Anyone who proposes to work a scheme of this nature cannot attempt to operate it successfully without the co-operation of the very people on whom the scheme depends.

10.55 p.m.

Mr. Bert Hazell (Norfolk, North)

I shall not keep the House more than two or three minutes, but there are one or two points I should like to make about the proposed levy. I was very interested to hear the hon. Member for Torrington (Mr. Peter Mills) say that he agreed in principle with the Meat and Livestock Commission and that he did not want to see a return to the difficult marketing conditions which used to exist in the industry a few years ago, but he was anxious that the levy should be kept to the lowest possible amount.

I think that my right hon. Friend, in bringing to the House the figure of £1.85 million, has endeavoured to keep the figure as low as practicably possible. I am certain that had the Commission had its way the figure the House would have been considering tonight would have been substantially in excess of £1.85 million. Therefore, I think that the Minister must have brought some pressure to bear to ensure that the amount to be demanded is as low as possible while being in keeping with the obligations and responsibilities of the Commission.

Mr. Harold Gurden (Birmingham, Selly Oak)

How long, can the hon. Gentleman tell us, will this figure remain at £1.85 million?

Mr. Hazell

We are dealing with the levy as it is presented to the House at the moment and I do not intend to be drawn into any projected figure or date in the future. This figure the House is being asked to approve will last for two years, and after that it will be for the House to decide whether the amount should be increased or not, according to the recommendations of the Minister at that time and the observations of the Commission.

We are assured that three-quarters of this sum is already a liability on the Commission itself, that it is taking over responsibilities of other organisations. We know that £1 million is required already for the continuation of the work which the Pig Industry Development Authority has done and is doing. I think that farmers generally would agree with me in saying that everyone associated with the industry desires that the work of P.I.D.A. should progress and that there should not be any reduction in it, because it is of help to the pig industry as a whole.

Some of the money is required for the work of meat recording, the expenses in connection with the development of meat recording, carcase classification, market information, and so on. Therefore, I must stress that we on this side of the House think that the amount called for is not unreasonable, bearing in mind the continuing responsibilities which the Commission will have to accept, and the work of development to be undertaken in the immediate future.

10.59 p.m.

Mr. Paul Hawkins (Norfolk, South-West)

Perhaps I should at the beginning declare an interest, as I am a livestock auctioneer. This declaration may be tedious repetition, because I have made it on previous occasions.

The levy is the result of setting up the Commission, about which I have always had considerable reservations. I have stifled them because I thought the industry wanted it and I thought that it might possibly do some good.

In Committee on the Agriculture Bill, as the Bill progressed, I had more and more misgivings about the objects for which the levy is being demanded. Time and time again I said, and the former Minister agreed, that the Bill must have the good will of all concerned if it was to work properly. Yet the drastic compulsory powers in Clause 9 were insisted upon, and that is our major objection to the Act—

Mr. Speaker

Order. The hon. Gentleman knows that we cannot amend the Act or the parent Section, of which the Order is an application. He must come to the Order.

Sir Douglas Glover (Ormskirk)

On a point of order. Are we not in order in saying that one of the reasons why we object to the Order is that it will be used for certain things which are in the Act? I would have thought that they were relevant.

Mr. Speaker

I am grateful to the hon. Member for advising the Chair of what is in order; I have, however, just ruled.

Mr. Hawkins

I regret being out of order, Mr. Speaker. I was simply trying to point out that one of the purposes of the Order is to introduce compulsory powers in certain instances.

I believed, in my innocence, that no Government would insist on a levy which would be used to put traders and butchers out of business and to prevent fresh enterprises from even opening in development areas. I understood that such vital matters as prevention of disease and control of imports could be tackled with this money. The Minister agreed that disease was an important subject and that the Commission would probably be able to deal with this. But it is not one of the objectives in the "Work and Income" booklet produced by the Commission, which says how the money will be spent.

The Commission gains its power from this levy, which enables it to close markets, butchers' shops and slaughterhouses. The Minister said that it was the Government's policy that smaller slaughterhouses should be closed, and the levy will make this possible. Is it any wonder that the trades have risen against this? The Opposition fought hard against these compulsory powers, but the chairman says, in this booklet: I should also make it clear that the scheme has not been agreed by many of the interests concerned despite weeks of consultation. I cannot think of any interests which are likely to have agreed it. Possibly the importers did, because they do not have to pay any levy; I should be interested to hear which interests have agreed it. Surely many more would have been preferable to beginning the scheme with no good will at all. I am now convinced that it will be more of a burden than a help.

My hon. Friend the Member for Torrington (Mr. Peter Mills) referred to the climate of opinion in the industry and the country. As a result of these levies and boards which have been imposed on agriculture, the industry has changed remarkably over the last five to seven years. Anyone who goes about the country will have realised that there has been a revulsion of feeling against the interference with private businesses and individuals which these schemes and their levies have wrought upon the population. I hope that my Front Bench—if not the Government, who are completely out of touch with public opinion—will realise this and will not consider themselves bound by former attitudes. The climate has changed in agriculture because we are plagued with these bodies and their levies. We have an enormous number and variety of them.

Mr. Speaker

Order. We are not discussing the hon. Gentleman's Front Bench or various levies. We are discussing the levy to which the Order refers.

Mr. Hawkins

I apologise, Mr. Speaker. I will not, therefore, refer to the Potato Board, which I was about to do.

I do not suggest that the chairman of this new board has adopted the sort of dictatorial attitude that has been adopted by a recent board which has been imposed on the agriculture industry. The first move of the Meat and Livestock Commission was to seek levies at double the rate the Commission thought necessary. I was glad to see that the Minister had reduced the top limits for levy purposes—for example, from 8s. to 6s. for cattle—but I had hoped that for once the right hon. Gentleman would have instructed the Commission to review the whole position again and would have said, "You will make do with half the figure for which you have asked." That is the attitude which the right hon. Gentleman should have adopted, at least for the first few years of the Commission's existence, towards this body.

The levy will be used to achieve the work mentioned in the booklet to which I referred and many producers and butchers consider this work to be totally irrelevant. At the start the board will cost £1.8 million. But what will be the total annual cost to the industry of all the levies? If we could spend this and the proceeds of other levies to raise the end prices to the producers, the money would be put to far better use.

One objective of the scheme—and no doubt much of the levy money will go towards this end—is to co-ordinate the labelling of meat. I agree with my hon. Friends who have pointed out that excessive handling can damage the quality of meat. If a country butcher is asked to cut off the best joint from a piece of meat that has been labelled, he must then handle the remainder of the joint, recut it and label it again. This constant handling of meat can do no good for the butcher or the consumer and it is bound to add to the cost.

Mr. Hazell

Is all meat priced at the top price? In other words, are there no cheaper cuts?

Mr. Speaker

Order. I suggest that the hon. Member for Norfolk, South-West (Mr. Hawkins) returns to the subject of the Order.

Mr. Hawkins

With respect, Mr. Speaker, the Order provides for amounts to be levied and sets out certain objectives on which the levy may be spent. Obviously, joints of meat are priced according to their quality. I was referring to the case of a housewife wanting a butcher to cut the best piece of meat from an already priced and labelled joint.

Mr. Speaker

Order. The hon. Gentleman cannot, in discussing this Order, refer in detail to the cutting up of meat, the selling of it and the pricing of various parts of it. We are discussing the levy for which the Order makes provision, and he must address his remarks to that.

Mr. Hawkins

I apologise again, Mr. Speaker. I thought that these matters were part of the objective of the scheme.

A compulsory scheme of this sort will be largely unworkable, the cost of the levy will rise and, in the end, costs to the consumer will rise. Apart from the £1 million which would have been spent anyway for P.I.D.A., £320,000, as set out in the booklet, is being spent on collecting the levy, on general headquarters expenses, approved expenditure and contingencies. I note that one of the contingencies would be the setting up of a new headquarters in Scotland. Such is the way that empires grow.

The farmers' unions and the butchers are right to object to this scheme. The National Farmers' Union journal of 1st June this year states: In its discussions with the Commission, however, the union has repeatedly emphasised the vital need for it to convince the industry that its services "— that is, the Commission's services— will provide real value for money. This it has so far failed to do. And this is the nub of the matter. The Commission's premature decision on the levy, presumably urged on by the Government, has produced a complete refusal by the butchers to co-operate. This is thoroughly bad for the whole meat industry and in particular for the consumer. Even at this late hour I urge hon. Members to reject the scheme so that further consultations can take place, and, in particular, I ask the Government to consider the suggestion that the Commission's work, largely for the ultimate benefit of all consumers, should be financed during the first year or two as a public scheme. This would cut costs. I hope that the Government will recognise that any scheme is doomed to failure if it does not have the good will of the vast majority of those concerned, and that they should withdraw this Order and think again.

Several hon. Members


Mr. Speaker

Order. I remind hon. Members that this debate will finish at 11.41 p.m. Hon. Members should be fair to each other and make sure that all who wish to speak have a reasonable proportion of the time available.

11.12 p.m.

Mr. Albert Booth (Barrow-in-Furness)

While many matters may divide us in this House, I hope we can be at one in agreeing that it is regrettable that a situation should have arisen in which the work of the Meat and Livestock Commission is liable to meet with obstruction and non-co-operation from a body of men whose maximum co-operation is needed if it is to work effectively.

I was concerned to receive today from a butcher in my constituency a communication which indicated that the President of the National Federation of Meat Traders' Associations has invited butchers to consider a number of ways in which they might frustrate the work of the Commission, without stepping beyond the bounds of the law, to express their protest at what they consider to be the unfair method of obtaining this levy.

While in no way approving the action of the President of the National Federation of Meat Traders' Associations, I suggest to the Minister that it might be worth while considering whether or not an undertaking can be given that alternative ways of obtaining the money necessary to carry out the work of the Commission will be considered. It seems to be a reasonable and logical request, when one considers who will benefit from the work of the Commission. It cannot be argued that the slaughterer or the farmer or the retailer are the only people who will benefit.

One could argue possibly more logically that the customer, the housewife and the members of the housewife's family would benefit equally well from the work of the Commission, but one would not go on from that to suggest that the levy should be placed on the housewife, although one may feel that it will be automatically passed on to her. I am certain that it is not beyond the ability of my right hon. Friend to devise a scheme whereby the cost could be spread more widely across the industry, bearing partially upon the retailer, partially upon the slaughterer and partially upon the farmer, recognising that, almost inevitably, it will bear partially upon the housewife in any case. This would be worth while, since it would be a fair way to do it.

Mr. Speaker

The hon. Member cannot amend the Order.

Mr. Booth

In view of your Ruling, Sir, I take it that I must oppose the Order.

I oppose it, therefore, so that I may ask my right hon. Friend to consider a fairer way of introducing the levy with a view to obtaining the maximum cooperation which will be needed not only to operate the work of the Commission fairly, but to ensure that the consumers will reap the full benefits of the work of the Commission, as we hope they ultimately will.

11.16 p.m.

Mr. Michael Jopling (Westmorland)

I am disappointed that during the course of the debate some of my hon. Friends have used the Order as a vehicle for attacking the Meat and Livestock Commission. If they have antagonisms to the Commission these should have been voiced some years ago, when the Verdon-Smith Report was first published. The Minister made a serious omission in not paying tribute to the Verdon-Smith Committee—I know that that is a dirty word to the Government—when he opened the debate. The attitude of some of my hon. Friends to the Meat and Livestock Commission has been soured by the experience of the Agricultural Training Board, which is a pity.

As an agriculturist, I believe that the levy which is to be imposed by the Commission will, in general, be useful to the industry as a whole. The Commission has a useful job to do, and I hope that it will be allowed to get on with it, but I am antagonistic to the Order and I oppose it on three grounds which have already been mentioned.

I oppose it partly because the Order refers only to home-killed meat, and this is a serious omission. The Verdon-Smith Report, in paragraph 851, said that for imports a comparable levy should be charged at the ports. I do not see why this could not have been done. I believe that it could simply and economically be collected at that point.

Secondly, my main quarrel with the Order is that it gives the Commission an open cheque for several years before Parliament can review the work of the Meat and Livestock Commission. As the Minister said in opening the debate, the Commission has agreed not to increase the levy for two years, but there is another £600,000 that can be collected under the Order above the amount to be levied for the years ahead. It could, therefore, be four years before the House has an opportunity to debate the workings of the Commission. It seems to me that there has been a serious change in policy by the Government from what we understood in Committee. When we debated the levy at that time, the hon. Gentleman the Joint Parliamentary Secretary, the hon. Member for Edinburgh, Leith (Mr. Hoy) said: Parliament will surely wish to take into account … this year's and next year's needs and circumstances, in the light of the way in which the Commission and the industry are using the powers provided in the Bill."— [OFFICIAL REPORT,Standing Committee A, 28th July, 1966; c. 454.] The phrase used was "this year's and next year's". Therefore, our understanding was that we would have a levy that could be reviewed at the end of two years, but we now have a situation in which Parliament may not discuss the matter again for four years.

The Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (Mr. James Hoy)

The Meat and Livestock Commission has agreed that this agreement should only continue for two years. That is the period laid down. If the hon. Gentleman will divert himself to another point, it was I who insisted in Committee that every section of the industry should be allowed to consider whether the levy ought to be imposed, and it was the hon. Gentleman and his right hon. Friends who opposed the Government in this respect, and insisted that the levy must be made at the carcase point.

Mr. Jopling

As I understand the position, the Commission has agreed that it will not increase the levy on cattle of 4s. a head for two years but as a result of the Order it could levy 6s. So, for two years, it can levy 4s., and then 6s., without coming to Parliament at all. We therefore have a clear case of the Government having altered their policy. I do not think that the Government can run away from this charge. They have not behaved fairly to the House, and I hope that because of this change of policy, of which we were not told earlier, we shall divide against the Order.

11.22 p.m.

Mr. Anthony Stodart (Edinburgh, West)

When the Minister adjourned consideration of the Order last week he said that he wanted to hear a full debate. I hope that he has now not only heard, but has listened to—as I am sure he has —a debate in which the main points made have been on the size of the levy, the method of its collection, and, although quite clearly I must tread very delicately here, the exclusion of imported meat.

I very much agree with the remarks of my right hon. Friend the Member for Ashford (Mr. Deedes) the other night, and with those of several hon. Members on both sides this evening. There are very strong feelings among producers that levies or contributions of this kind are getting money enough. That feeling may be unreasonable, but it certainly exists. I agree with my hon. Friends the Members for Torrington (Mr. Peter Mills) and Westmorland (Mr. Jopling) that this feeling has been stimulated, I think unfortunately, by the incredible hamfistedness of the handling of the Agricultural Training Board's affairs. After that experience of some months ago I think that the Government should have prepared the ground a little for this levy, but as far as I can see they have done very little indeed.

I say quite frankly that this Commission is desirable, by and large, provided that it works—and this is waving the red rag—along the lines of P.I.D.A., because I think that P.I.D.A. has, on the whole, done good work which has been to the advantage not only of the producers but of the consumers by improving the quality of livestock and pigmeat. Therefore, I say that provided the Commission gets its priorities right and uses the levies to get an improved recorded production of the right types of carcases, and so on, and forgets about most of the nonsense in Section 9, I do not in principle quarrel with it.

Nor, if I may say so, do I quarrel, broadly speaking, with the principle of paying by levy. The Amendment we moved in Committee was suggested by the National Farmers' Union, which accepted the principle and was concerned only with the amount. It is most important that the method of collection should be done simply and efficiently. The Bill certainly gave powers to levy livestock products. I think it meant that a levy could be put on each pound of meat pie or sausages. To put the levy on small sales would be quite prohibitive.

I cannot see why, from the point of slaughter, the charge will not filter through back a little to producers and forward a little to consumers, through what I know the hon. Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Michael Foot) does not like, the ordinary play of market forces. This may have disadvantages, but I do not think that there is a simpler, more efficient or cheaper way of collecting the levy.

It is not in order to attempt to amend this Order and to ask that imported meat should be included, but I think I heard you say, Mr. Speaker, that it was within order to denounce the exclusion of imports. It is quite disgraceful that imports should not be included in the levy. I should think it—I use a denunciatory word—preposterous that imports should escape because this means that inevitably far more of the weight must fall on the home-produced article. The hon. Member for King's Lynn (Mr. Derek Page) reminded us of some of the proportions of imported meat as opposed to home-produced. Something like 34 per cent. of all the meat with which the Commission will deal is imported. It is deplorable that importers will without question benefit by the work of the Com- mission in improving marketing, market research and so on without paying a halfpenny for it.

The Scottish National Farmers' Union has spoken forcibly, as have some of my hon. Friends tonight, about the original levy proposals. The union said: Frankly, we doubt the wisdom of making provision for a rate of levy greatly in excess of what is justified by foreseeable needs. It is true that the right hon. Gentleman has reduced the original proposals. The excess is no longer so great, but the excess still exists. Because of the exclusion of imported meat from the levy, because we believe that until the Commission has demonstrated that it is giving value for money and that it should not demand more money than it requires, because also, despite what the hon. Member for Leith has told us, without doubt a higher levy can be imposed under this scheme without coming back to this House for two years—he sought to make clear that it was impossible to impose a higher levy but that can be done— we shall vote against this Order unless the right hon. Gentleman can reassure us on these points tonight.

11.30 p.m.

The Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (Mr. Cledwyn Hughes)

Mr. Speaker, with your permission and that of the House, I will reply to the debate. I am extremely glad that we were able to have this extended debate, because I think that it was right that hon. Members who wished to take part in it should be enabled to do so. I have valued the contributions which have been made. We have had the opportunity of hearing differing views and we have had some time to reflect on what we heard in the debate last week. Some of the speeches made by hon. Members opposite have been inflammatory, far more so than they were in Committee on the Bill when the Commission was discussed in very great detail. It is clear that market forces of one kind or another have certainly diffused something through the Opposition since the Committee stage of the Bill.

As the hon. Member for Edinburgh, West (Mr. Stodart) said, critical interest has centred on two important aspects of the scheme—the method of collecting the levy and the exclusion of imports. Hon. Members have shown that they attach weight not only to the likely economic and commercial consequences, but also to the presentational aspects of the equity of the scheme. My hon Friend the Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Michael Foot) expressed his concern that the scheme should be equitable in fact and in appearance, and that the appearance of equity was worth paying for. He made one slight error; he said that I had praised market forces. I said that I recognised their existence, as my hon. Friend must do when he writes his splendid books and sells them.

The hon. Member for Stratford-on-Avon (Mr. Maude), in particular, questioned the appearance and wisdom of a levy on home production without any charge on imports. These, therefore, are the two questions with which I should like to deal very briefly. There are a few hon. Members who would throw out the Commission bell, book and candle, but they do not represent the view of the House as a whole.

As to the point of collection, there has been argument as to whether or not the levy will be borne entirely at the point of slaughter, where it is first imposed, or whether it will be diffused through the industry as a whole. I freely admit that neither the Commission, in its repeated discussions with its Distribution Committee, nor my hon. Friend the Under-Secretary of State for Scotland and I during the course of the very lengthy representations, could move the meat trades from their belief that the levy would stick where it first fell, although there were those among them who thought that in time there could be diffusion through the trade and industry.

I have been reassured to hear so many hon. Members state their view that the levy would be spread. This is my view. There is no reason to think that this charge should differ in its impact from an increase in labour costs or any other additional charge.

However, some, although they admit this, have criticised the appearance of the scheme. How fair does the scheme appear to be? Would it be worth while incurring the extra costs of other methods of collection for the sake of demonstrating openly that the charge fell across the whole industry? That depends on the additional cost involved. The Commis- sion certainly considered it, and we considered it very carefully. The Commission estimated roughly that the possible alternative methods of collection would cost more than three times as much-that is, three times the £125,000 provided for this purpose in the budget of the Commission.

I do not say for a moment that this is conclusive, or that other methods might not be worked out. Certainly, it is possible to work out other methods. I want to stress that, with one exception, alternatives are by their very nature bound to increase costs substantially and they will either add to the Commission's administration or give the trade more paper work, or both.

The exception would be financing from public funds which is what one hon. Gentleman suggested. But it has been made clear from the very start, and was made perfectly clear in Committee, that this would not be right. However, although hon. Members on both sides have said that the point of slaughter is clearly the convenient and economic point of collection, and although many, including the right hon. Member for Grantham (Mr. Godber), share my view about the spreading of the levy, I regret that we have been unable so far to remove all the fears and the doubts which exist in the meat trade and which have been expressed in the House.

Therefore, I should like to take this opportunity to make it clear that we do not want to ignore their arguments. It would be unfair to do so, and it is something I would not wish to do. I believe that it is a fair scheme, as well as the most economical and practical, and that this will emerge more clearly in the light of working experience over the next 12 months or two years. For that reason my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland and I are very willing to give the trade every opportunity to come back and to show us and the Commission that the levy is sticking at the point of collection, if the trade still thinks this after a year or so of operating the scheme. In such an event we should give serious consideration to the trade's representations if it appeared that the levy was operating inequitably. I hope that after those assurances hon. Members will be satisfied that we are ready to have another look in 12 months.

References have been made again to splitting the levy. I do not want to say very much more about that. It is possible to split the levy under the Act, but it would not have been possible if hon. Members opposite had had their way. For example, the hon. Member for Norfolk, South-West (Mr. Hawkins), made a very strong speech tonight against the Commission and all its works, but I have been reading HANSARD of the Committee stage of the Act. This is what he said then: We believe it to be a correct principle that a levy should not be paid on a live animal and thereafter a levy be paid on its carcase, on parts of its carcase and on lard coming from that carcase, or other livestock products."— [OFFICIAL REPORT,Standing Committee B. 24th February, 1966; c. 642.] Therefore, hon. Members opposite have changed their minds. I do not complain about that, but the meat trade, farming and the House should know that they have completely switched their views in this matter.

I thought that the hon. Member for Torrington (Mr. Peter Mills) came to a very reasonable conclusion, and I hope that after hearing me he will be in the Lobby with us tonight. He talked about co-operation by the Commission to avoid duplication of effort. The Act under which the Commission operates says clearly that it shall …enter into such consultations with other authorities and persons as appear to them required to ensure that duplication of research, advisory services and other activities is avoided so far as practicable. Therefore, that point is covered by the Act.

The hon. Member for Clitheroe (Sir Frank Pearson) dealt with expenditure on pig development, and attributed to me words which I did not utter in my speech last week. I hope that he will read it carefully again. I said that about three quarters of the levy in the first two years would be spent on maintaining existing work, and that the largest part of this, about £1 million, is the continuing work now done by the Pig Industry

Development Authority. This reflects the fact that the Commission is starting in a responsible way and not flying too high.

My hon. Friend the Member for Sal-ford, West (Mr. Orme) asked about the exclusion of the primary producer from the effects of the levy. I have dealt with this in some detail, but I could add that there is a broad measure of agreement on both sides of the House that market forces will spread the effect of the levy, and the primary producer is certainly among those who will be affected. It will depend on the state of the market at any given time.

It would not be proper for me to deal in any detail with the import side, but hon. Members have spoken about it. If money were collected on imports on the understanding that it was to develop services to imports, the proceeds could not simply be merged in the general funds of the Commission. Australian and New Zealand exporters, for example, who had paid levies to their meat boards, as they do, often for very similar services, would be quick to ask the Commission to show that any import levy here was not being spent for the benefit of the British meat industry alone. This could inhibit promotional activities in Britain, and hon. Members would regret that more than anyone.

If we are convinced, as I am, that money should be invested on a national scale in improvements in British production and marketing, there is no alternative to ploughing back from our own production and in our own way. We have not set up the Commission to encourage the trade in imported meat, but to promote the sale of British meat, to serve the consumer, to serve the trade, and to serve the industry. I hope that everyone here tonight will now support the Order.

Question put:—

The House divided: Ayes 198, Noes 141.

Division No. 286.] AYES [11.41 p.m.
Allaun, Frank (Salford, E.) Atkinson, Norman (Tottenham) Bidwell, Sydney
Alldritt, Walter Bagier, Gordon A. T. Binns, John
Allen, Scholefield Barnett, Joel Bishop, E. S.
Anderson, Donald Baxter, William Blackburn, F.
Archer, Peter Beaney, Alan Blenkinsop, Arthur
Armstrong, Ernest Bence, Cyril Boardman, H. (Leigh)
Atkins, Ronald (Preston, N.) Benn, Rt. Hn. Anthony Wedgwood Booth, Albert
Boston, Terence Harrison, Walter (Wakefield) Molloy, William
Bottomley, Rt. Hn. Arthur Haseldine, Norman Morgan, Elystan (Cardiganshire)
Boyden, James Hazell, Bert Morris, John (Aberavon)
Braddock, Mrs. E. M. Heffer, Eric S. Moyle, Roland
Bray, Dr. Jeremy Henig, Stanley Murray, Albert
Brooks, Edwin Herbison, Rt. Hn. Margaret Newens, Stan
Brown, Bob(N'c'tle-upon-Tyne,W.) Hilton, W. S. Norwood, Christopher
Brown, Rt. Hn. George (Belper) Hooley, Frank Ogden, Eric
Brown, Hugh D. (G'gow, Provan) Horner, John O'Malley, Brian
Brown, R. W. (Shoreditch & F'bury) Houghton, Rt. Hn. Douglas Oram, Albert E.
Buchan, Norman Howarth, Robert (Bolton, E.) Orme, Stanley
Carmichael, Neil Howell, Denis (Small Heath) Oswald, Thomas
Carter-Jones, Lewis Howie, W. Owen, Dr. David (Plymouth, S'tn)
Coe, Denis Hoy, James Palmer, Arthur
Coleman, Donald Huckfield, Leslie Park, Trevor
Concannon, J. D. Hughes, Rt. Hn. Cledwyn (Anglesey) Parkyn, Brian (Bedford)
Crossman, Rt. Hn. Richard Hunter, Adam Pavitt, Laurence
Cullen, Mrs. Alice Hynd, John Pearson, Arthur (Pontypridd)
Dalyell, Tam Irvine, Sir Arthur (Edge Hill) Peart, Rt. Hn. Fred
Davidson, Arthur (Accrington) Jackson, Colin (B'h'se & Spenb'gh) Pentland, Norman
Davies, Ednyfed Hudson (Conway) Jeger,Mrs.Lena(H'b'n&St.P'cras,S.) Perry, Ernest G. (Battersea, S.)
Davies, Dr. Ernest (Stretford) Johnson, Carol (Lewisham, S.) Price, Thomas (Westhoughton)
Davies, Harold (Leek) Johnson, James (K'ston-on-Hull, W.) Rees, Merlyn
Dell, Edmund Jones, Dan (Burnley) Robinson, W. O. J. (Walth'stow, E.)
Dempsey, James Jones, J. Idwal (Wrexham) Rodgers, William (Stockton)
Dewar, Donald Judd, Frank Ross, Rt. Hn. William
Diamond, Rt. Hn. John Kenyon, Clifford Ryan, John
Dickens, James Kerr, Mrs. Anne(R'ter & Chatham) Shaw, Arnold (Ilford, S.)
Dobson, Ray Kerr, Dr. David (W'worth, Central) Sheldon, Robert
Doig, Peter Kerr, Russell (Feltham) Short,Rt.Hn.Edward(N'c'tle-u-Tyne)
Driberg, Tom Lawson, George Short, Mrs. Renée (W'hampton,N.E.)
Dunnett, Jack Leadbitter, Ted Silkin, Rt. Hn. John (Deptford)
Dunwoody, Mrs. Gwyneth (Exeter) Lee, Rt. Hn. Frederick(Newton) Silkin, Hn. S. C. (Dulwich)
Dunwoody, Dr. John (F'th & C'b'e) Lee, John (Reading) Silverman, Julius
Eadie, Alex Lestor, Miss Joan Slater, Joseph
Edwards, William (Merioneth) Lewis, Arthur (W. Ham, N.) Small, William
Ellis, John Lomas, Kenneth Snow, Julian
Ensor, David Loughlin, Charles Spriggs, Leslie
Evans, loan L. (Birm'h'm, Yardley) Luard, Evan Summerskill, Hn. Dr. Shirley
Faulds, Andrew Lyon, Alexander W. (York) Swain, Thomas
Fernyhough, E. Lyons, Edward (Bradford, E.) Swingler, Stephen
Fitch, Alan (Wigan) McBride, Neil Symonds, J. B.
Fletcher, Raymond (Ilkeston) McCann, John Thornton, Ernest
Fletcher, Ted (Darlington) Macdonald, A. H. Urwin, T. W.
Foot, Michael (Ebbw Vale) McGuire, Michael Varley, Eric G.
Ford, Ben Mackenzie, Gregor (Rutherglen) Wainwright, Edwin (Dearne Valley)
Forrester, John Mackie, John Walker, Harold (Doncaster)
Fowler, Gerry Mackintosh, John P. Watkins, David (Consett)
Freeson, Reginald Maclennan, Robert Weitzman, David
Galpern, Sir Myer McMillan, Tom (Glasgow, C.) Wilkins, W. A.
Garrett, W. E. McNamara, J. Kevin Williams, Clifford (Abertillery)
Gourlay, Harry Mahon, Peter (Preston, S.) Williams, Mrs. Shirley (Hitchin)
Gray, Dr. Hugh (Yarmouth) Mallalieu, J.P.W.(Huddersfield,E.) Willis, Rt. Hn. George
Gregory, Arnold Manuel, Archie Winnick, David
Grey, Charles (Durham) Marks, Kenneth Woodburn, Rt. Hn. A.
Griffiths, David (Rother Valley) Mendelson, J. J. Woof, Robert
Griffiths, Eddie (Brightside) Mikardo, Ian Yates, Victor
Griffiths, Will (Exchange) Millan, Bruce TELLERS FOR THE AYES:
Hamilton, James (Bothwell) Milne, Edward (Blyth) Mr Joseph Harper and
Hannan, William Mitchell, R. C. (S'th'pton, Test) Mr. Charles R. Morris.
Allason, James (Hemel Hempstead) Clegg, Walter Godber, Rt. Hn. J. B.
Astor, John Crouch, David Goodhart, Philip
Atkins, Humphrey (M't'n & M'd'n) Dalkeith, Earl of Grant-Ferris, R.
Baker, W. H. K. (Banff) Dance, James Gresham Cooke, R.
Bessell, Peter Dean, Paul (Somerset, N.) Griffiths, Eldon (Bury St. Edmunds)
Biffen, John Deedes, Rt. Hn. W. F. (Ashford) Gurden, Harold
Birch, Rt. Hn. Nigel Dodds-Parker, Douglas Hall, John (Wycombe)
Black, Sir Cyril Donnelly, Desmond Hall-Davis, A. G. F.
Boardman, Tom (Leicester, S.W.) Doughty, Charles Hamilton, Michael (Salisbury)
Body, Richard Drayson, G. B. Hawkins, Paul
Bossom, Sir Clive du Cann, Rt. Hn. Edward Heseltine, Michael
Boyle, Rt. Hn. Sir Edward Eden, Sir John Hill, J. E. B.
Braine, Bernard Elliot, Capt. Walter (Carshalton) Holland, Philip
Brinton, Sir Tatton Elliott,R.W.(N'c'tle-upon-Tyne,N.) Howell, David (Guildford)
Bromley-Davenport, Lt.-Col.SirWalter Emery, Peter Hunt, John
Bruce-Gardyne, J. Errington, Sir Eric Iremonger, T. L.
Bryan, Paul Eyre, Reginald Jenkin, Patrick (Woodford)
Campbell, B. (Oldham, West) Fisher, Nigel Jopling, Michael
Cary, Sir Robert Foster, Sir John Kershaw, Anthony
Chichester-Clark, R. Gilmour, Sir John (Fife, E.) Kimball, Marcus
Clark, Henry Glover, Sir Douglas King, Evelyn (Dorset, S.)
Kirk, Peter Peel, John Teeling, Sir William
Kitson, Timothy Percival, Ian Temple, John M,
Knight, Mrs. Jill Peyton, John Thorpe, Rt. Hn. Jeremy
Lambton, Viscount Pike, Milss Mervyn Turton, Rt. Hn. R. H.
Lane, David Pink, R. Bonner van Straubenzee, W. R.
Langford-Holt, Sir John Pounder, Rafton Vaughan-Morgan, Rt. Hn. Sir John
Legge-Bourke, Sir Harry Powell, Rt. Hn. J. Enoch Waddington, David
Longden, Gilbert Pym, Francis Wainwright, Richard (Colne Valley)
Loveys, W. H. Ramsden, Rt. Hn. James Ward, Dame Irene
Lubbock, Eric Rawlinson, Rt. Hn. Sir Peter Weatherill, Bernard
Mackenzie,Alasdair(Ross&Crom'ty) Rhys Williams, Sir Brandon Webster, David
Maddan, Martin Ridley, Hn. Nicholas Wells, John (Maidstone)
Maginnis, John E. Ridsdale, Julian Whitelaw, Rt. Hn. William
Maude, Angus Rossi, Hugh (Hornsey) Williams, Donald (Dudley)
Maxwell-Hyslop, R. J. Royle, Anthony Wills, Sir Gerald (Bridgwater)
Mills, Peter (Torrington) Russell, Sir Ronald Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)
Monro, Hector Scott-Hopkins, James Winstanley, Dr. M. P.
Morrison, Charles (Devizes) Sharples, Richard Wolrige-Gordon, Patrick
Munro-Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh Silvester, Frederick Worsley, Marcus
Murton, Oscar Sinclair, Sir George Wright, Esmond
Nabarro, Sir Gerald Smith, Dudley (W'wick & L'mington) Wylie, N. R.
Neave, Airey Smith, John (London & W'minster) younger, Hn. George
Noble, Rt. Hn. Michael Stainton, Keith
Onslow, Cranley Steel, David (Roxburgh) TELLERS FOR THE NOES:
Osborn, John (Hallam) Stodart, Anthony Mr. Jasper More and
Page, Graham (Crosby) Tapsell, Peter Mr. Anthony Grant.
Pardoe, John Taylor, Sir Charles (Eastbourne)
Pearson, Sir Frank (Clitheroe) Taylor, Frank (Moss Side)