Potatoes

Oral Answers to Questions — Agriculture, Fisheries and Food – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 29th February 1972.

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Photo of Mr Christopher Brocklebank-Fowler Mr Christopher Brocklebank-Fowler , King's Lynn 12:00 am, 29th February 1972

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he has considered what steps can be taken to enable British manufacturers of potato flour to purchase home-grown potatoes at a price which enables them to compete with cheap imports from Canada; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Mr James Stodart Mr James Stodart , Edinburgh West

My right hon. Friend is at present considering, in consultation with all the interests concerned, whether it would be possible, consistently with the potato gurantee arrangements, to make supplies available for granule manufacture at more economic prices.

Photo of Mr Christopher Brocklebank-Fowler Mr Christopher Brocklebank-Fowler , King's Lynn

I welcome that reply. Would my hon. Friend indicate when he is likely to have completed his consultations, as this is now becoming a matter of urgency?

Photo of Mr James Stodart Mr James Stodart , Edinburgh West

I appreciate the urgency. I can only say that we shall complete them as soon as possible, but this is a slightly complex subject.

Photo of Mr Richard Body Mr Richard Body , Holland with Boston

Does my hon. Friend agree that it might not be in the interests of growers of good-quality potatoes for the produce and potato merchants to be bypassed in any future arrangement?

Photo of Mr James Stodart Mr James Stodart , Edinburgh West

That is a point which will no doubt be taken into consideration.