HC Deb 11 November 1970 vol 806 cc364-5
9. Sir J. Gilmour

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what extra costs have been incurred by the horticultural industry in Scotland since 1st January 1970; and if he will make a statement.

The Under-Secretary of State for Home Affairs and Agriculture, Scottish Office (Mr. Mick Buchanan-Smith)

No precise figures are available, but as in agriculture generally there have been substantial increases since the beginning of the year.

Sir J. Gilmour

Does my hon. Friend agree that efficient horticultural producers in Scotland should be given the same protection for crops which are suitable for growing in Scotland as is given to the agricultural industry in the proposed levy system?

Mr. Buchanan-Smith

While there is, as my hon. Friend knows, some measure of tariff and quota protection, it is the policy of the Government, like that of their predecessors, to reduce the horticultural industry's dependence on the tariff.

Mr. Douglas

Will the Minister give the House an indication of what representations have been made to him by the National Farmers' Union of Scotland relating to the dumping of horticultural produce by Eastern European countries?

Mr. Buchanan-Smith

The hon. Gentleman raises an important matter. But, as he will appreciate, it is a matter for my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry. If the hon. Gentleman has any evidence, I suggest that he puts the case to my right hon. Friend.