HC Deb 02 June 1964 vol 695 cc148-9W
Mr. Peart

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what steps he proposes to take to maintain the production of British Wiltshire bacon.

Mr. Soames

The Bacon Market Sharing Understanding which came into operation on 1st April, 1964, is designed to provide more stable prices for bacon than in the past, and the flexible guarantee is designed to promote stability in pig production. The "middle-band of the flexible guarantee was raised following this year's Annual Review to take account of the Government's undertaking to use its best endeavours to keep U.K. bacon production at levels specified in the Understanding. These measures should help to provide conditions favourable to the economic operation of our bacon industry.

Nevertheless, as indicated in paragraph 50 of Cmnd. 2315, the Government is to examine with the interests concerned whether further provisions are necessary to influence or regulate U.K. bacon production at the levels specified in the Understanding. This examination is proceeding, but conclusions cannot be expected until we have more experience of the working of the Understanding. It is not intended that the examination should distinguish between different types of bacon production in the U.K.