HC Deb 13 March 1980 vol 980 c1531
1. Mr. Shersby

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what representations he has received from the Food and Drink Industries Council concerning the responsibility for food industry matters when the new EEC Commission is established in 1981; and if he will make a statement.

The Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (Mr. Peter Walker)

The council has informed me of the request made to the President of the Commission by the association representing community food and drink manufacturers—CIAA—for improvements in arrangments within the Commission for dealing with matters affecting the industry. I welcome that initiative.

Mr. Shersby

Does my right hon. Friend agree that, because of the inevitable financial stress on the common agricultural policy during the life of the next Commission, that policy must become a common food and agriculture policy, reflecting the interests of the food industry as well as those of the farming community?

Mr. Walker

It is vital that the food industry has a better input into what is happening in terms of decision-taking in Europe. With regard to a common food policy, I would consider that only if it were better than the common agricultural policy.