§ Matthew Taylor
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what research the Government are conducting into tackling Japanese knotweed, with particular reference to natural biological methods of control. 
§ Mr. Meacher
The Department is not currently undertaking any research specifically into biological control of Japanese knotweed.
However, through the joint DEFRA/Environment Agency flood management research programme, the Government are supporting a programme of work relating to management and control of aquatic and riparian plants, including Japanese knotweed, by the Centre for Aquatic Plant Management. Also, English Nature, the Government's scientific adviser on wildlife and conservation in England, has commissioned a study on management of problem non-native species, which includes consideration of Japanese knotweed.