HC Deb 15 June 1950 vol 476 cc24-5W
52. Mr. G. Williams

asked the Minister of Agriculture if he is aware of a shortage of powder for use in machines for gassing rabbits; and what steps he will take to improve the situation.

69. Mr. Hurd

asked the Minister of Agriculture if he is aware that farmers in many districts are unable to obtain gassing powder to destroy rabbits which are doing serious damage to crops; and if steps have now been taken to reserve extra supplies for the home market.

Mr. T. Williams

I am aware of the shortage of gassing powder and I would refer the hon. Members to the reply given to the hon Member for Newbury (Mr. Hurd) on 25th May. Since then the manufacturers have increased production of the powder for the home market. Exports represent only a relatively small factor in the present shortage.

58. Mr. Hopkinson

asked the Minister of Agriculture what further steps he is taking to provide farmers with assistance in destroying rabbits, having regard to the fact that many farmers report that at the present prices they are unable to persuade trappers to accept them.

Mr. T. Williams

It is the farmers' own responsibility to deal with rabbits on their lands. The long-standing arrangement under which farmers may obtain gassing powder at half price for the destruction of rabbits is still in force, and the limited pests staffs of agricultural executive committees are available to assist farmers in killing rabbits on a repayment of costs basis.