§ Mr. Renton
asked the Minister of Food what the wheat deficiency payment will be for the period from 1st July to 30th September, 1954; when it will be paid; and whether he will make a statement 5W about the possibility of advance payments for barley, oats, mixed corn and rye.
The ascertained average price for the 4,736,954 cwt. of millable wheat sold and dispatched on delivery during the first accounting period is 19s. 7.9d. per cwt. The standard price for this period is 28s. 10d. per cwt. and the deficiency payment will, therefore, be 9s. 2.1d. per cwt. or £9 3s. 6d. per ton. In addition, 437,266 cwt. of wheat brought up to millable standard after sale will be included in the payment. The total payment of £2,400,000 to about 21,000 growers will begin immediately and will be completed before Christmas, except for a few certificates which require further examination.
Advance payments on rye, barley, oats and mixed corn have been considered in consultation with the Cereals Deficiency Payments Advisory Committees on which the principal interests concerned with the production and marketing of these crops are represented. The deficiency payment 6W on these crops is not payable until after the end of the cereal year and the rising trend of prices for cereals has bad to be taken into account. It has been decided to make advance payments for rye and barley. As regards oats, only a small proportion of the crop has yet been marketed and present prices are at or above the standard price of 24s. per cwt. A decision as to an advance payment on oats and mixed corn has, therefore, been deferred until about the middle of February.
The advance payment on rye will be at the rate of 3s. per cwt. Payment will begin early in January and will continue on certificates received until the end of March, when the position will be reviewed. If three-quarters of the estimated crop is sold by that date the advance payment will amount to £90,000.
The advance payment on barley will be £2 10s. per acre, which is equivalent to 2s. 7¼d. per cwt. The payment will begin during December and is expected to total about £5 million.