§ Mr. Peter Mills
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what further steps he will take to safeguard United Kingdom crops against the possible invasion of Colorado beetles into the United Kingdom from the Continent.
§ Mrs. Fenner
A temporary ban on imports of certain Italian vegetables was introduced on 30 April following findings of large numbers of Colorado beetles in Italian produce. This demonstrates that effective action is quickly taken when there is a serious threat of infestation. As part of our regular campaign at this time of year, our plant health and seeds inspectors are constantly on the alert at ports and markets, and publicity is undertaken to ensure special vigilance by traders and the public. There are standing contingency plans for eliminating any outbreaks in growing potato crops.