HC Deb 26 November 1931 vol 260 cc538-9W

asked the Minister of Agriculture whether he is aware that imported potatoes, intended primarily for consumption, are frequently used as seed by smallholders and allotment holders, and that these potatoes are not submitted to any sort of Government inspection, and may be attacked by wart disease or other diseases common to potatoes imported from abroad; and whether, as their use as seed potatoes increases the risk of the spread of such diseases in this country, he intends to take any steps to prevent this?


The Wart Disease of Potatoes Order of 1923 prohibits the planting in England and Wales of any potatoes grown outside Great Britain and Ireland unless such planting has been authorised by my Department. I am arranging for renewed publicity to be given to this requirement before the commencement of the next planting season. I would remind my hon. Friend that imported potatoes are required to be accompanied by an official certificate of health, and that uncertified consignments are not allowed to be distributed until they have been officially examined And passed as healthy.