§ Mr. Crouch
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he can now announce his proposals for special help to horticulturists who are threatened with the loss of their livelihood as a result of entry into the European Economic Community.
§ Mr. Godber
The Government recognise that apple and pear growers will be called upon to face particular difficulties as a result of entry into the EEC, and that in consequence some of them may no longer find it possible to continue in commercial production. My right hon. Friends and I are therefore proposing to seek legislation providing for special payments to be made to growers of dessert or culinary apple or pear trees which are grubbed up, in464W
rent increases which would otherwise have come into operation during that period. The standstill ends on 28th April. Under the second stage of the programme for controlling inflation there is a general power in Clause 11 of the Counter-Inflation Bill to provide by order for restricting or preventing increases of rent or for restricting rent payable on new lettings. Should this power be enacted, an order dealing with agricultural rents will be laid before the House. The precise content of the order is under consideration in consultation with the industry.