HC Deb 16 November 1971 vol 826 cc194-5
4. Mr. Peter Mills

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he is satisfied with the present operation of the Bacon Stabilisation Fund; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Prior

As my hon. Friend will know, my right hon. Friends and I have decided that the method of calculating stabilisation payments introduced last April shall continue unchanged for a further three months, after which we shall review the position again in the light of the evidence then available.

Mr. Mills

I congratulate both sides of the industry on the increase in the share of the bacon market, but what can my right hon. Friend do to convince British housewives of the need to purchase more home-produced bacon rather than imported bacon? In the long run would this not help to reduce the Bacon Stabilisation Fund?

Mr. Prior

Yes, Sir. Our share of the market has been going up, but there is still a gap between the price realised for British bacon and the price realised for Danish bacon. It is that gap which leads to the large stabilisation payment and this is the gap which we have to close. We have to encourage British housewives to eat British bacon and must show them that the quality is as good as it is.