§ 24. Mr. BOOTHBY
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he has any proposals to make to relieve the plight of Scottish agriculture?
Mr. W. ADAMSON
I would refer the hon. Member to the answer which I gave last Tuesday to a question on this subject by the hon. and gallant Member for Caithness and Sutherland (Sir A. Sinclair).
§ Mr. BOOTHBY
Has the attention of the right hon. Gentleman been called to the resolutions which have been passed at a series of mass meetings of agriculturists in the north of Scotland recently; and, in view of the urgency of the problem and the critical condition of the industry, when will he expect to be in a position to make a full statement of the intentions of the Government?
I want to state, quite frankly, that I have had my attention called to the demonstrations that have taken place in various parts of Scotland. During the time I have filled the position which I now occupy, I have been taking a considerable number of steps that will benefit agriculture. My hon. Friend the Member for Aberdeen and Kincardine (Mr. Boothby) may be interested to learn that the farmers in his constituency have benefited by an order which we have issued regarding the grading and marking of meat. This has raised the sale from his own part of the country in Smithfield of graded and national marked beef from 539 sides per week to no less than 2,406.
§ Mr. BOOTHBY
Is it not a fact that these grading proposals were first produced by the late Government, and does the right hon. Gentleman not realise that they in themselves are totally inadequate to meet the requirements of agriculture.
§ Mr. SPEAKER
These are matters for debate, and we had better put off this discussion to a more convenient date.