HC Deb 30 July 1964 vol 699 cc372-3W
Mr. Godman Irvine

asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what experiments are being carried out to provide farmers with an adequate substitute for dieldrin; and what results have been obtained.

Sir E. Boyle

Active research is in progress to find alternatives to dieldrin from insecticides already on the market. For some pests, satisfactory alternative compounds are available, for example BHC, which may be used as a spray, as a sheep dip and as a seed dressing.

The development of new pesticides must remain largely in the hands of the industrial laboratories which are able to devote much greater resources to such work, although scientists at official research institutes do assist industry in the laboratory and field assessment of the usefulness of new chemicals.

My right hon. Friend the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food is confident that the chemical manufacturers will continue their efforts to produce suitable alternative pesticides. The search for alternatives is being intensified, but it would be unreasonable to expect industry to disclose the results of its efforts prematurely.