§ 3. Mr. Gregory
To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he has any plans to extend the definition of milk to include sheep and goats milk; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Gregory
Does my hon. Friend agree that the present definition of milk in our legislation is not logical or uniform and that it would be in the best interests of food safety and hygiene to modify that definition, to give confidence to all who purchase sheep and goats' milk? In particular, does my hon. Friend agree that microbiological tests on herds of a reasonable size would also help to restore such confidence?
§ Mr. Maclean
I am inclined to agree with my hon. Friend. Sheep and goats' milk is already produced to consistently high standards. We have issued voluntary codes of practice and guidance, but it would be in the best interests of the industry for sheep and goats' milk to be produced to the same high standards that already apply to cows' milk. We shall introduce regulations on sheep and goats' milk, but we shall make sure that they are not so over-regulatory that we have a nanny society.