Control of Pesticides etc.

Part of Orders of the Day — Food and Environment Protection Bill [Lords] – in the House of Commons at 3:46 pm on 26th June 1985.

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Photo of Mr Brynmor John Mr Brynmor John , Pontypridd 3:46 pm, 26th June 1985

Yes, I understand that, but that is the value of Dr. Lynch's research. It is important. The soil survey would be able to advise whether it would be beneficial to turn straw back or whether it would present the risks of which the hon. Gentleman speaks, in which case one would not expect it to be done.

There is likely to be a spin-off from the work of Dr. Payne and Dr. Lynch within the fairly near future not just for glasshouse crops but for outdoor crops. Farmers Weekly of 7 June talks about microbial techniques and the fact that Microbial Resources Ltd. has pioneered five pesticides based upon the biological method of control. We are talking about the many possibilities that there will be in the future for growing crops.

More importantly, there has been general unease about the use of pesticides on stored crops. That is a facet of the problem that the hon. Gentleman mentioned. The use of pesticides on stored crops can be a problem unless they are severely controlled. The use of insect hormones, which is being pioneered instead of pesticides, would provide a safer way of preserving the quality of stored crops.

In the research programme there are exciting possibilities for the biological rather than chemical control of pests. We are asking for an overall strategy, which combines healthy crops with the lowest possible input of chemical pesticides.

Amendments Nos. 33 and 34 call for the Government to study the results of the control of pesticides after the first year of the Act's operation and to return to Parliament with a report so that we can continue the debate which the Bill has stimulated and which has revealed a degree of unease about the use of chemical pesticides that the House ignores at its peril.