Orders of the Day — Pig Husbandry Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 9:38 am on 25th January 1991.

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Photo of Kate Hoey Kate Hoey , Vauxhall 9:38 am, 25th January 1991

I agree with the hon. Gentleman. I know that he is knowledgeable about Northern Ireland. The detail could be discussed in Committee, but I wish to see the Northern Ireland dimension brought in. I am sure that Northern Ireland farmers will welcome the hon. Gentleman's remarks.

The Bill makes a start with pigs, but I hope that it will be seen as a general move away from intensive farming in general. At some stage perhaps we can come back to the House with measures on battery hens, which suffer similarly from the way in which they are reared. However, I shall not go into that now.

Even though this country is at war and thousands of people are worried about what is happening and about their families, I am pleased to say that I and, I am sure, many other hon. Members receive many letters about intensive farming. People care about it. I have certainly received more letters about it than about the Gulf crisis. I do not want to draw any comparisons, but many people in Britain care about farming methods. They have discovered that we have a real opportunity today to do something about it. It is not often that the House discusses a measure that will make a real change. I urge all hon. Members to give the Bill a Second Reading. I hope that the measure will progress and become law as quickly as possible.