§ Mr. Home Robertson
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what are the terms of reference of the review of the functions of the Department of Agriculture arid Fisheries for Scotland; and who will conduct the review.
§ Mr. John Mackay
The review of the functions of the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries for Scotland:in the area of crops, plants and plant health announced earlier this month will be carried out by officials of that Department under the following terms of reference.1. To examine critically all the relevant requirements (including the legal, technical and scientific requirements) of the existing systems concerning crops, plant health arid pesticides, particularly as they affect areas where costs are recovered from the agricultural industry.2. Taking account of the requirements identified in 1, to:
- (a) participate in the United Kingdom review of the PBR/NL and seed certification systems and to take cognisance of the results of that review;
- (b) consider in so far as they might affect Scotland the possible repercussions of any recommendations that might stem from the review referred to at 2(a) above;
- (c) review the operation of the seed potato regulations
43 and the related systems for the production of pre-basic potato material and basic seed potatoes;
- (d) review the operation of plant health controls (particularly as they affect seed potatoes) in relation to imports and exports, quarantine, PCN and other indigenous pests and diseases;
- (e) review the operation of the soft fruit certification schemes;
- (f) review the operation of the enforcement functions in relation to seeds and seed potatoes and to the control of pests (including the misuse of chemicals
44 in the control of vertebrate pests) and the use of pesticides;
- (g) review the R and D requirements (within the ASS or elsewhere) in support of the functions described at 2(a) to (f) above.3. To examine against the future needs of the agricultural industry and consumers any possibilities for rationalising these systems by whatever means might seem the most likely to be effective in terms not only of cost and sound administration but of scientific rationale; and to make recommendations.