HC Deb 20 April 1923 vol 162 cc2447-8
Major HAY

(by Private Notice)asked the Minister of Agriculture whether he can make any further announcement as to the decision of the Government with regard to the Report of the Agricultural Tribunal.

The MINISTER of AGRICULTURE (Sir Robert Sanders)

In addition to the decisions already announced with regard to local rates, railway rates, and hops, the Government have reached the following decisions with regard to other recommendations of the Report:

Wheat Offals.—The Government do not accept the proposals of the Tribunal.

Malting Barley. — The Government accept the proposal that an Excise Duty at the rate of 10s. a quarter be imposed on imported malting barley, to be collected at the brewery, distillery or malt-house, with a preference of one-third on barley imported from the Dominions. It was part of the arrangement concluded with the brewing industry before the introduction of the Budget that this should not involve any rise in the price of beer. The Government propose to introduce a Bill dealing with the matter in the course of the present Session.

Potatoes.—The Government are not at present prepared to adopt the proposal of the Tribunal that imports of foreign potatoes be permitted only under general licence of the President of the Board of Trade.

Milk Production.—The Government arc in favour of the proposals made in Paragraph 33 of the Report, and are considering how the proposed assistance can best be given.

Agricultural Wages.—The Government are not prepared to adopt the proposal for setting up six District Wages Boards. We intend, however, to introduce legislation to make compulsory the registration of agreements arrived at by Conciliation Committees.