HL Deb 24 April 1996 vol 571 cc97-8WA
Lord Brougham and Vaux

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What financial support will be provided to UK beef producers and slaughterhouses in the current financial year.

Lord Lucas

I refer my noble friend to the statement that my noble friend Lord Lindsay repeated on 16th April 1996 (Official Report, col. 597).

In addition to the support measures previously announced, particularly for the rendering industry and for the slaughter of young bull calves, the measures set out below have now been implemented. Parliamentary approval for additional provision and for the funding of new services will be sought in Supplementary Estimates for Class III Vote 1 (Intervention Board—Executive Agency: CAP market support and administration) and Class III Vote 2 (Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food; operational expenditure, agencies and departmental administration). Pending that approval, urgent expenditure estimated at £190 million will be met by repayable advances from the Contingencies Fund.

1. Supplementary compensation payments on steers and heifers—i.e. older beef cattle whose market value is greater than cull cows.

Cost: £80 million on Class III Vote 1. An advance from the Contingencies Fund of the full amount is required.

2. Emergency aid to the slaughtering industry, comprising two elements:

  1. (i) Immediate payment to slaughterhouses calculated on the basis of bovines slaughtered during 1995/96. Cost: £30 million on Class III Vote 2.
  2. (ii) Purchase of unsaleable stocks of beef held by licensed slaughterhouses and cutting premises. Cost: £80 million on Class HI Vote 1.

An advance from the Contingencies Fund of the full amount (£110 million) is required.

3. A scheme to purchase beasts over 30 months old and to dispose of their carcasses safely to prevent beef from these cattle from entering the human food chain.

Cost: £550 million on Class III Vote 1, 70 per cent. of compensation payments to be funded by the EU.