HC Deb 27 March 1975 vol 889 cc300-1W
Mr. Michael McNair-Wilson

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what research is being carried out by his Department into more economic methods of food production in which less grain is required for animal feeding stuffs.

Mr. Strang

The greatest area of opportunity for achieving a reduction in the amount of grain used for animal diets is in the feeding of cattle. As a result of recommendations contained in the National Economic Development Council's report on grassland and subsequently reinforced by the Agriculture and Horticulture Advisory Council, the Ministry is embarking on a major programme to encourage an increase in the proportion of grass, forages and other crops fed to cattle. In addition the Ministry is commissioning a considerable programme of research and development with the Agriculture Research Council as well as with its own research establishments which puts special emphasis on the improvement of forage conservation. Emphasis is also being given to silage-making, where chemical additives are used to improve fermentation and feeding value, and to work on new crops for conservation.