I cannot predict the final cost but our imports of meat and meat preparations of all kinds from January to September cost £290 million. Of this total, imports of carcase meat and offal accounted for £132 million.
It is a large figure. It has always been part of our traditional food policy to import, as well as putting an emphasis on home production. There are some people who would wish us to stop all imports, and I hope that hon. Gentlemen opposite who are nodding their heads in agreement will answer this question: would they stop imports of meat from New Zealand?
Would the Minister consider whether it would not be advantageous now to import meat off the bone from a certain area where foot-and-mouth is endemic? It would save money and, if his advisers at Pirbright advocated it, it might afford some relief from the danger of foot-and-mouth.