Export of Live Cattle

Oral Answers to Questions — Agriculture, Fisheries and Food – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 2nd December 1957.

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Photo of Wing Commander Sir Robert Grant-Ferris Wing Commander Sir Robert Grant-Ferris , Nantwich 12:00 am, 2nd December 1957

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he is aware that the 60-mile limit of travel from the port of entry of cattle exported from the United Kingdom is causing hardship, especially to many small farmers; and what steps he will take to alleviate this.

Photo of Mr Joseph Godber Mr Joseph Godber , Grantham

While it is estimated that the numbers of cattle for slaughter being exported at present are lower than they were this time last year, the average domestic prices realised for steers and heifers this year have been higher than those in the corresponding periods last year. The home prices of cows tend to fall at this season, but are much the sane this year as they were last.

Photo of Wing Commander Sir Robert Grant-Ferris Wing Commander Sir Robert Grant-Ferris , Nantwich

Is there any consistency whatever in a rule like this, because cattle often have to travel more than 60 miles in this country? Cattle which are travelling must be watered at least every twelve hours. Surely it ought to be possible to arrange for that to be done on the Continent.

Photo of Mr Joseph Godber Mr Joseph Godber , Grantham

The Balfour Committee went into the matter very thoroughly, and it was largely as a result of its recommendations that these restrictions were imposed. We have tried to deal with the position fairly from the point of view of both the cruelty aspect and the position of home farmers, and I hope that in some respects we have succeeded.

Photo of Lady  Grant of Monymusk Lady Grant of Monymusk , Aberdeen South

Can my hon. Friend say whether the Continental countries are observing the regulation?

Photo of Mr Joseph Godber Mr Joseph Godber , Grantham

Yes, Sir; I think I can say that, certainly in respect of the countries which are receiving imports at present—Holland and Western Germany.

Photo of Wing Commander Sir Robert Grant-Ferris Wing Commander Sir Robert Grant-Ferris , Nantwich

Owing to the importance of this subject, I give notice that I shall raise it on the Adjournment as quickly as possible.