§ Mr. Pickthall
To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what measures he is taking to ensure that beef farmers who have been selling steers, heifers and young bulls since March, receive a share of the £29.4 million agreed for distribution to United Kingdom producers in special difficulties. 
§ Mr. Baldry
[holding answer 15 July 1996]: Some £29 million has been allocated to a system of national aid measures. This money will be distributed to beef producers and under the beef marketing payment scheme, according to the number of adult clean cattle sold in the period 20 March to 30 June for slaughter for human consumption. The application period for this scheme closed on 23 August 1991. More than 29,000 claims were submitted in respect of some 450,000 animals throughout the United Kingdom. All of these claims have now been processed and the rate of payment has been fixed at £66.76 per eligible animal. The first payments began earlier this month and it is hoped they will all be completed by 15 October.