Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Questions House of Commons


Download Subtitles

SRT

ASS


Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Questions

Live coverage of questions in the House of Commons to the environment, food and rural affairs secretary Andrea Leadsom and her ministerial team.


Similar Content

Browse content similar to Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Questions. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!

Transcript


LineFromTo

Welcome to BBC Parliament's live coverage of the House of Commons. In

:00:11.:00:18.

an hour, the Labour MP Stephen Doughty has tabled an urgent

:00:19.:00:23.

question on gay and lesbian people in the Chechen Republic of Russia,

:00:24.:00:27.

author won after reports of people being tortured and at least three

:00:28.:00:36.

killed. In David -- David Livingstone will set out forthcoming

:00:37.:00:42.

business. Then there will be two select committee statements, about

:00:43.:00:44.

the public administration and Constitutional affairs committee,

:00:45.:00:51.

and lessons to be learned in the EU referendum. The second in the

:00:52.:00:56.

Justice committee's report on prison reform. Then we will discuss the

:00:57.:01:03.

Gorton by-election, after the death of Sir Gerald Kaufman, which will

:01:04.:01:07.

allow a by-election on the 8th of June. Then there will be questions

:01:08.:01:13.

on the impact of changes to state pensions on UK expats and the second

:01:14.:01:17.

on infectious diseases. Join me for a round-up of the day in the House

:01:18.:01:23.

of Commons at 11pm tonight. First we have questions for the Environment,

:01:24.:01:25.

Food and Rural Affairs secretary, Andrea Leadsome, and her team of

:01:26.:01:30.

ministers. The UK has made significant progress in improving

:01:31.:01:40.

your quality in the last decade, in all five areas. However there are

:01:41.:01:49.

countries not meeting targets for emissions of carbon dioxide, so to

:01:50.:01:53.

help address this, last year the government consulted on a framework

:01:54.:01:58.

which will be consulted shortly. -- published shortly. Following three

:01:59.:02:03.

defeats in the courts for failing to address the 50,000 deaths a year in

:02:04.:02:08.

the country due to poor air quality, and we're the government defended

:02:09.:02:11.

the indefensible, a judge ordered the government to produce and your

:02:12.:02:16.

quality plan by this Monday. Labour believe we need to go further, with

:02:17.:02:20.

any quality national framework as part of the clean air act. What are

:02:21.:02:25.

the main parts of this plan, and how much has the Minister allocated to

:02:26.:02:29.

addressing the UK's poor air quality in the plan? They think it is a

:02:30.:02:35.

great shame that the honourable lady criticises this government, who

:02:36.:02:43.

since 2011 have committed ?2 million to increase the uptake of ultralow

:02:44.:02:46.

emissions vehicles, supported greener transport schemes and set

:02:47.:02:51.

out how we will improve your quality through a new programme of clean air

:02:52.:02:54.

zones. In the Autumn Statement we announced a further ?290 million to

:02:55.:03:00.

support low emission buses and taxis, retrofitting alternative

:03:01.:03:04.

fuels, and we will be consulting on our plans to improve nitrogen oxide

:03:05.:03:18.

emissions very shortly. This is so much pie in the sky. Every time we

:03:19.:03:26.

have DEFRA questions, it is coming soon, when is the report, when are

:03:27.:03:32.

we going to stop people being poisoned in our cities, end Times,

:03:33.:03:35.

in places like Huddersfield, and when will we see action? Now, not

:03:36.:03:48.

next week or next year! This government is totally committed to

:03:49.:03:53.

cutting harmful emissions. We have made great progress in the last

:03:54.:03:56.

decade, which is more than the Labour government did. Emissions

:03:57.:04:00.

went up under their watch. We recognise there is more to do, and

:04:01.:04:05.

we will be publishing our proposals soon. People buying diesel cars

:04:06.:04:18.

thinking they were the cheap way forward, will the Minister make sure

:04:19.:04:23.

she discusses with this Transport Secretary and Secretary, so we do

:04:24.:04:26.

not penalise them and work with the devolved governments as well? We

:04:27.:04:29.

need to find a way forward to look after those people. We have to take

:04:30.:04:41.

into account the impact on ordinary working families, and on businesses,

:04:42.:04:44.

and as the Prime Minister has made very clear, we understand that

:04:45.:04:48.

people bought diesel cars under incentives from the last Labour

:04:49.:04:52.

government, they bought them in good faith and we need to ensure that

:04:53.:04:57.

they are not penalised for those actions. Will the Minister consider

:04:58.:05:04.

a targeted diesel scrappage scheme, which particularly supports

:05:05.:05:09.

low-income families? The opportunity to do so was missed in the Autumn

:05:10.:05:15.

Statement and in the budget. I can assure the honourable lady that the

:05:16.:05:17.

government is looking at all possible

:05:18.:05:31.

areas we need to have mitigation to support families. All types are on

:05:32.:05:42.

the table. Leg we have a very low air pollution quality with all areas

:05:43.:05:46.

in the low pollution band. It is essential that the national

:05:47.:05:50.

framework is nationwide and encompasses Northern Ireland. Could

:05:51.:05:53.

I ask the Minister what discussions she has had with her counterpart in

:05:54.:05:58.

the northern island assembly to make sure it happens? I can assure him we

:05:59.:06:10.

have had discussions with all administrations. -- the Northern

:06:11.:06:13.

Ireland Assembly. We are working closely together and will be making

:06:14.:06:25.

announcements in due course. The Great Repeal Bill will ensure that

:06:26.:06:27.

the body of existing Euro environmental law will have an

:06:28.:06:33.

effect in UK law, but Parliament will have the chance to make sure

:06:34.:06:37.

the legislative framework is outcome driven, focusing on improving the

:06:38.:06:42.

environment in a generation. The government will continue to uphold

:06:43.:06:48.

obligations and international environmental treaties, and we will

:06:49.:06:50.

continue to seek other countries to do so as well. Assuming regulations

:06:51.:07:02.

come in as part of the bill, that is important but at least as important

:07:03.:07:09.

is ensuring the regulations are permanent. The country decided to

:07:10.:07:19.

leave the European Union last year. We're trying to give as much

:07:20.:07:22.

certainty as possible to ensure regulations continue and will

:07:23.:07:31.

continue as a consequence. I'm concerned that he thinks we will

:07:32.:07:35.

simply rip up the rule book. We want a better environment for our future

:07:36.:07:40.

generations, which is what this government will deliver. The

:07:41.:07:46.

Minister knows very well that the EU environmental regulations have been

:07:47.:07:49.

very helpful to people like me and you, Mr Speaker, when holding the

:07:50.:07:56.

feet to the fire of HS2 when it comes to protecting our environment.

:07:57.:07:59.

Could the Minister give me an undertaking that she will not alone

:08:00.:08:05.

any diminution to areas of outstanding natural beauty, and that

:08:06.:08:11.

exiting the European Union does not hand a blank cheque to HS2 to ride

:08:12.:08:17.

roughshod over the countryside? My right honourable friend will be

:08:18.:08:20.

aware that the government has already committed in developing HS2

:08:21.:08:23.

and other infrastructure we will uphold the highest environmental

:08:24.:08:29.

standards we cherish. While she is working on the EU air quality

:08:30.:08:33.

regulations, can I echo the call in the last question for a national

:08:34.:08:41.

framework, rather than ad hoc local decision-making, especially as

:08:42.:08:47.

emissions are actually declining at the moment. Can the Minister looked

:08:48.:08:52.

at all causes of air pollution to properly cost alternatives,

:08:53.:08:56.

especially the cost to drivers on the taxpayer, and urge the

:08:57.:08:58.

government to stop demonising diesel drivers. I think it is fair to say

:08:59.:09:05.

that as we have said at the dispatch box before, when we are tackling

:09:06.:09:11.

with the quality we have to work with local communities, because the

:09:12.:09:13.

situation will vary. This government is not demonising diesel drivers at

:09:14.:09:20.

all. It was the Labour government that introduced incentives for

:09:21.:09:23.

people to start using diesel. It happens to be that the current Mayor

:09:24.:09:30.

of London stood here in his last year of the Brown government saying

:09:31.:09:33.

that Euro standards would solve the problem. We are now clearing up the

:09:34.:09:42.

mess. One of those environmental standards we can improve on outside

:09:43.:09:47.

the European Union as much as inside if the state of the oceans. As the

:09:48.:09:53.

Minister will know, there is a massive amount of dumping of

:09:54.:09:58.

plastics damaging sea life and choral well-being. That is a huge

:09:59.:10:01.

conference in the United Nations tween the fifth on the 9th of June.

:10:02.:10:05.

Ministers will be busy doing other things. What is she going to do to

:10:06.:10:09.

ensure that the British voice is properly heard to ensure we're going

:10:10.:10:13.

to do something to clean up our oceans? My honourable friend will be

:10:14.:10:20.

aware that we launched a litter strategy recently. A lot of rubbish

:10:21.:10:24.

that winds up in marine comes from the land. We need to continue to

:10:25.:10:28.

work on that. Marine conservation is particularly important to this

:10:29.:10:32.

government, we have continued to extend our blue belt around the

:10:33.:10:35.

coastline of the country but also with overseas territories, and I can

:10:36.:10:39.

assure him that the oceans conference between the fifth and 9th

:10:40.:10:44.

of June, he points out there the general election in the middle, but

:10:45.:10:47.

I can assure him the interest of the United Kingdom will be well

:10:48.:10:53.

undertaken. While the Great Repeal Bill may bring short-term stability

:10:54.:10:58.

and working statute book when the UK leads the EU, it remains to be seen

:10:59.:11:02.

whether this government or indeed future governments will take any

:11:03.:11:07.

action to road the UK's environmental policies as they exist

:11:08.:11:11.

now. What assurances can the Minister give to my constituents who

:11:12.:11:16.

have written to me expressing deep concerns over environmental and is

:11:17.:11:23.

post-Brexit? I can continue to try and assure the House that this

:11:24.:11:27.

government has been very clear in the manifesto on which we stood in

:11:28.:11:30.

2015 that we want to be first to leave the environment in a better

:11:31.:11:34.

state than we find it, which is what this government continue to do.

:11:35.:11:40.

Minister Rory Stewart announced in Parliament on the 24th of November

:11:41.:11:46.

2015 that the UK Government will ban lion and trophy imports by the end

:11:47.:11:50.

of 2017. What progress has been made in this regard, and can she tell us

:11:51.:11:59.

what reductions in Trophy hunting in international treaties, after the UK

:12:00.:12:03.

has left the EU? I did not catch the opening of the honourable

:12:04.:12:06.

gentleman's question, when he referred to something from 2015, but

:12:07.:12:12.

I want to assure him that these imports are taken on a case-by-case

:12:13.:12:16.

basis, and we continue to work with other countries to make sure we can

:12:17.:12:19.

serve important species around the world. The UK is a global leader in

:12:20.:12:21.

this. Question number four. With your

:12:22.:12:34.

permission, I will group question for Andrew question seven. The

:12:35.:12:38.

consultation closed on the 28th of February and were currently

:12:39.:12:43.

examining the responses. We intend to introduce legislation this year

:12:44.:12:46.

with a banner manufacturing expected to apply from the 1st of January

:12:47.:12:49.

2018 and a band of sales from the 13th of June 2018 as outlined in our

:12:50.:12:59.

proposals. I strongly support the Government's proposals to ban micro

:13:00.:13:03.

beads in cosmetics and personal care products but they probably only

:13:04.:13:09.

account for about 4% of those polluting our rivers. With the

:13:10.:13:14.

Government say what they are doing to prevent the other types of

:13:15.:13:18.

migrant plastics which are going to continue polluting our waters? The

:13:19.:13:22.

Government wants to consult on the extent of the -- the Government

:13:23.:13:32.

launched a consultation on the extent of the damage micro plastics

:13:33.:13:36.

are causing and we are continuing to look into that. The use of plastic

:13:37.:13:41.

bottles is also something we are looking at but I should remind my

:13:42.:13:44.

right honourable friend that we need to be gathered as we take this

:13:45.:13:48.

forward because a lot of micro beads and plastics are the outcome of

:13:49.:13:52.

things like recycling bodies -- bottles into making fleeces and

:13:53.:13:58.

suchlike. I was recently rummaging through my wife's election of

:13:59.:14:03.

shampoos and to my horror I found a plastic container of anti-wrinkle,

:14:04.:14:17.

anti-ageing lotion. Complete with exfoliating micro beads. Obviously

:14:18.:14:22.

neither the Secretary of State or the Minister would have such need

:14:23.:14:26.

for a abrupt but would she speak to the Chief Executive of Procter and

:14:27.:14:31.

Gamble that telling this sort of product at the moment is complete

:14:32.:14:36.

outrageous and he should withdraw them at once. Well, Mr Speaker, what

:14:37.:14:44.

I find extraordinary is that lady Belling is a flawless picture and

:14:45.:14:48.

wouldn't even need these products, so I am sure that my honourable

:14:49.:14:52.

friend will be buying flowers later today to make up for this. It is

:14:53.:14:59.

fair to say, Mr Speaker, that we are working with manufacturers now and a

:15:00.:15:03.

lot of them are starting to remove these products already, practically,

:15:04.:15:07.

but we want to make sure that this avoidable pollution is taken out of

:15:08.:15:12.

our environment permanently. Number five. Mr Speaker, we regularly meet

:15:13.:15:23.

EU counterparts at agriculture and figure it -- agriculture and

:15:24.:15:27.

fisheries Council and food and drink issues are regularly discussed and

:15:28.:15:33.

informed by bilaterals. The great and noble county of Lincolnshire is

:15:34.:15:39.

the bread basket of England and much of the food we eat comes from our

:15:40.:15:43.

county. Liza Fate has been proved to be harmless by scientists, it is

:15:44.:15:50.

used in the same production of wheat and agreed that we eat. Once we

:15:51.:15:55.

regain control of our destiny, can the minister assure me its use will

:15:56.:15:56.

be reauthorised. As the honourable gentleman knows,

:15:57.:16:21.

the EU are reviewing the use of Glyphosate and it having been proved

:16:22.:16:32.

safe, we are backing its use again. My first question on Defra... This

:16:33.:16:50.

minister has shown since my first question procrastination my children

:16:51.:16:54.

would envy. The minister wants us to believe we can trust him with

:16:55.:17:00.

correcting UK policy. Where is this money? How on earth can Scottish

:17:01.:17:03.

farming trust this Government and the Tories? Well, the honourable

:17:04.:17:08.

gentleman and I have discussed this number of times and he is aware the

:17:09.:17:12.

reason the review we intended to do last year was delayed was because of

:17:13.:17:17.

the referendum, which has changed the context dramatically. We

:17:18.:17:21.

continue to have discussions with Scottish industry. Just yesterday, I

:17:22.:17:25.

met NFU as to discuss feature agriculture policy. What can be done

:17:26.:17:34.

to encourage the European Union to promote the processing of feedstuffs

:17:35.:17:37.

in developing countries, thinking particularly of olive oil and copy

:17:38.:17:42.

where the value added tends to be in the European Union? The UK and

:17:43.:17:49.

indeed a number of other European countries have preferential trade

:17:50.:17:53.

agreements in place to support developing countries, to give them

:17:54.:17:57.

tariff free access to the European market. This is important to the

:17:58.:18:00.

development of some of those countries and the issues he raises

:18:01.:18:04.

are ones that are regularly discussed that the EU agriculture

:18:05.:18:08.

Council. An important part of the food processing sector is the fish

:18:09.:18:15.

area of my constituency and is part of those EU discussions, what

:18:16.:18:21.

efforts will be made to ensure there was no border in the Irish Sea which

:18:22.:18:33.

would stop permitting fishermen from fishing in both parts as they

:18:34.:18:38.

currently can? As the honourable lady knows, there has been an issue

:18:39.:18:41.

with a long-standing agreement between the Irish Parliament and the

:18:42.:18:48.

UK and this was discussed at a couple of weeks ago by myself and

:18:49.:18:53.

administer from the Irish Parliament about arrangements we may have after

:18:54.:19:00.

Brexit? I have the honour of representing a constituency whose

:19:01.:19:03.

farmers feed the country and I would be interested to know, will my

:19:04.:19:05.

honourable friend work to ensure that farmers are not put at a

:19:06.:19:12.

disadvantage with their EU competitors when these exciting new

:19:13.:19:19.

trade deals are negotiated? Well, my honourable friend, she has a very

:19:20.:19:23.

important farming constituency and I know that and what I can reassure

:19:24.:19:26.

her is that I myself worked in the farming industry for ten years, it's

:19:27.:19:30.

an industry I'm passionate about and I've been going up and down the

:19:31.:19:34.

country in recent months, meeting farmers, discussing their concerns,

:19:35.:19:38.

but we have a fantastic opportunity on leaving the European Union to

:19:39.:19:41.

design a new agricultural policy that is fit for purpose. Press

:19:42.:19:46.

reports earlier this week suggest the Danish Government may press for

:19:47.:19:51.

restrictions on UK fish imports to the EU if the Danish fleet this

:19:52.:19:56.

access to UK, mostly Scottish fishing waters when the UK leads the

:19:57.:20:06.

EU. That would have severe impact on Scottish fishermen who export 50% of

:20:07.:20:14.

their fish to the EU each year and can he tell us what discussions he

:20:15.:20:18.

has had a mess? I have regular meetings with all EU counterparts

:20:19.:20:25.

and I believe the Danish minister is planning a visit to the UK in the

:20:26.:20:29.

next few weeks and I hope to meet in them. The honourable lady should not

:20:30.:20:32.

worry about the opening positions people might take in a negotiation.

:20:33.:20:38.

It doesn't matter what people ask for, it matters what the UK

:20:39.:20:44.

Government is willing to grant. The Scottish fishing industry want to

:20:45.:20:48.

leave the EU, they want to leave the CFP, they wanted to take control of

:20:49.:20:52.

our waters. The fishing industry is vitally important to my

:20:53.:20:56.

constituency. Would the Minister update fishes there and around the

:20:57.:21:03.

industry -- around the UK when the Government intends to withdraw from

:21:04.:21:06.

the London 1954 fisheries convention? The honourable lady

:21:07.:21:13.

makes an important point. There is a 1964 London fisheries convention

:21:14.:21:16.

which has access arrangements for a number of countries. As we've made

:21:17.:21:20.

clear on numerous occasions, we are looking at this very closely and as

:21:21.:21:23.

the prime ministers said two weeks ago, we had to say something on this

:21:24.:21:34.

shortly. Number six. Mr Speaker, since 2015, Defra has opened or

:21:35.:21:39.

improved terms for over 160 markets, increasing access to markets is a

:21:40.:21:45.

priority set out in the food and drink international action plan and

:21:46.:21:50.

we work with industry to identify and prioritise and increase export

:21:51.:21:56.

value. In my role as the trade envoy to Nigeria, I have recently invited

:21:57.:22:00.

the Nigerian agriculture Minister to come to the UK. Will he agree with

:22:01.:22:04.

me that it's important to show him the whole of the value change --

:22:05.:22:09.

value train in agriculture in which we do so well question mark I

:22:10.:22:14.

commend the work that my honourable friend does building negotiations

:22:15.:22:23.

with -- building relations with Nigeria, building relationships and

:22:24.:22:29.

I am delighted to hear he has invited the minister here to see

:22:30.:22:32.

some of the great work we do through the supply chain and what we do to

:22:33.:22:39.

reduce waste within it. Does the minister recognise that it's

:22:40.:22:42.

absolutely crucial that the needs of the agricultural sector are placed

:22:43.:22:47.

at the heart of Brexit negotiations? Isn't it clear that if the

:22:48.:22:49.

Government doesn't get its act together, a bad Brexit deal will

:22:50.:22:53.

leave British farmers and food producers facing the double whammy

:22:54.:22:57.

of cheap food imports and tariffs on their exports? I would simply say to

:22:58.:23:04.

the honourable lady that access to the UK market is incredibly

:23:05.:23:07.

important for European countries as well. Whilst we exported around ?11

:23:08.:23:11.

billion worth of food and drink to the European Union, we import some

:23:12.:23:17.

?28 billion worth from the EU. That is why farming unions across the EU

:23:18.:23:20.

are telling their governments that they must have a free-trade

:23:21.:23:23.

agreement with the UK. How does the Government intend to deliver on its

:23:24.:23:29.

promises? The CLA are saying that the Government should admit it

:23:30.:23:32.

cannot design a workable new agricultural policy in less than two

:23:33.:23:35.

years because Debra simply does not have the capacity. The Government's

:23:36.:23:40.

failure to reach an agreement could leave out farmers unable to compete

:23:41.:23:46.

by at home and abroad. Very specifically, what guarantees for

:23:47.:23:50.

the Minister provide here, today, to rural communities right across the

:23:51.:23:54.

country that farming subsidies and tariffs free trade will be

:23:55.:23:59.

guaranteed under a Tory Government? I would simply say festival to the

:24:00.:24:03.

honourable lady that we have some tremendously talented policy

:24:04.:24:06.

officials both in Defra and in our agencies and they have been working

:24:07.:24:10.

very closely on some of the decal behind the design of each

:24:11.:24:13.

agricultural policy on some of those issues. The Prime Minister has been

:24:14.:24:17.

very clear that she will make an offer to other European countries

:24:18.:24:21.

for a bold, ambitious free agricultural agreement. One of the

:24:22.:24:27.

markets that farmers in northern Lincolnshire are hoping to expand on

:24:28.:24:31.

is producing crops for eggs converged on to bio ethanol viewed.

:24:32.:24:37.

They are concerned about the Government's commitment to this.

:24:38.:24:41.

Could you reassure them that if a market for future expansion? We do

:24:42.:24:46.

see a role for bio ethanol fuels but also we are keen to ensure that we

:24:47.:24:51.

don't lose too much good agricultural land to biofuels. The

:24:52.:24:54.

honourable gentleman, my honourable friend, will be aware that this is

:24:55.:24:58.

predominantly an issue for the Department for Transport and I would

:24:59.:25:01.

invite him to raise this issue with them in the next Parliament. Markets

:25:02.:25:08.

are not necessarily just country based but also a product based. The

:25:09.:25:13.

UK has a tremendous market for lactose free milk most of which is

:25:14.:25:17.

imported. What can we do to encourage UK producers to develop

:25:18.:25:20.

this product in the UK, manufactured in the UK? Well, we do have

:25:21.:25:26.

obviously a very strong dairy industry in this country and there

:25:27.:25:33.

are lots of opportunities like that. We have established things like the

:25:34.:25:36.

food innovation networks and things like the aggregate fund and the

:25:37.:25:39.

number of other funds as well to support innovative product

:25:40.:25:42.

development of the sort he mentioned. Number nine, please, Mr

:25:43.:25:52.

Speaker. Mr Speaker, energy prices and exchange rates are the key

:25:53.:25:57.

drivers of price changes in the agriculture commodities market and

:25:58.:25:59.

this affects all countries in the world independent of whether they

:26:00.:26:03.

are in the EU or not. There was a sharp spike in food prices in 2008,

:26:04.:26:08.

they levelled up in 2014 and fell by 7% over the next two years. We have

:26:09.:26:13.

seen an increase of 1.3% over the last year. I thank the Minister for

:26:14.:26:18.

his response but the facts are that the ONS are reporting a surge in

:26:19.:26:23.

food process that is likely to continue to rise. Children are

:26:24.:26:30.

reports -- in food prices that is likely to continue to rise. Children

:26:31.:26:34.

are returning to school after the holidays and the elderly are going

:26:35.:26:38.

into hospital hungry yet the Government still refuse to measure

:26:39.:26:44.

food poverty. Isn't it true that they refuse to measure it because

:26:45.:26:47.

then they would have to accept culpability? The honourable lady is

:26:48.:26:54.

wrong because we do measure it and we include a measurement on

:26:55.:26:58.

household spending among the poorest 20% of households and I can tell you

:26:59.:27:02.

that household spending within those houses has remained steady at about

:27:03.:27:08.

16% for the last decade. On the matter of food, Mr Marcus Fish.

:27:09.:27:15.

Thank you, Mr Speaker. Farmers across the south-west are very proud

:27:16.:27:18.

of the high-quality food they produce whether its beef, lamb,

:27:19.:27:25.

milk, etc. What are the opportunities the Minister sees bus

:27:26.:27:28.

leaving the EU to ensure they get a fair price for that food on an

:27:29.:27:29.

ongoing basis? As he knows, we have recently had a

:27:30.:27:38.

call for evidence and a review of the grocery code adjudicator. There

:27:39.:27:41.

have been representations we should consider extending the remit of that

:27:42.:27:46.

further up the supply chain and we're giving consideration to those

:27:47.:27:51.

representations. But grocery called adjudicator has made a good start

:27:52.:27:54.

improving the relationship, particularly between producers and

:27:55.:28:00.

supermarkets. It is common in food processing plants for 70% of the

:28:01.:28:05.

employees to be EU migrants, and it is not clear where the staff are

:28:06.:28:09.

going to come from in the future. Is the Minister committed to defending

:28:10.:28:12.

this sector in the Brexit negotiations to come, and so

:28:13.:28:17.

avoiding price rises from this as well? I can reassure him I have had

:28:18.:28:23.

regular meetings with food processors, indeed just two days ago

:28:24.:28:27.

I had a meeting with the new president of the food and drink

:28:28.:28:31.

presentation, and this issue was raised. Around 30% of employees,

:28:32.:28:39.

according to the ONS, in the food sector are from other European

:28:40.:28:42.

countries, but I would simply see the Prime Minister has been clear

:28:43.:28:46.

that she wants to protect the rights of EU citizens that are here, and

:28:47.:28:50.

she would expect that to be reciprocated as well, which can be

:28:51.:28:54.

agreed earlier in the negotiations. May I gently remind him again of the

:28:55.:28:59.

paradox that we starve the poor by refusing to buy their food from

:29:00.:29:07.

them? He makes a very good point. As I mentioned in relation to an

:29:08.:29:11.

earlier discussion, we do give preferential trade access to some

:29:12.:29:19.

developing countries. The ACP countries are particularly

:29:20.:29:22.

important, in sectors such as sugar, and this is important for them to

:29:23.:29:31.

develop those industries. My honourable friend is right to raise

:29:32.:29:37.

this issue, but she will recognise we want to get the proposals right

:29:38.:29:43.

and we will consult as soon as we can. With the Minister agree that

:29:44.:29:46.

rigorous enforcement when this policy is in place is one of the

:29:47.:29:54.

most vital elements Western Mark I entirely agree. Robust enforcement

:29:55.:29:57.

is important to ensure the rules are effective. She will recognise police

:29:58.:30:06.

and other agencies do an excellent job in this, and she will also

:30:07.:30:14.

recognise our approach in tackling this is tackling demand, so we can

:30:15.:30:25.

very much enjoyed my visit to her very much enjoyed my visit to her

:30:26.:30:29.

constituency last week. There was a great -- it was a great pleasure to

:30:30.:30:33.

meet some of her growers, including at a farm, to discuss seasonable

:30:34.:30:37.

labour. I am aware of the horticultural sector's concerns. We

:30:38.:30:45.

are consulting with businesses and the advisory committee later this

:30:46.:30:54.

year. Can I thank my right honourable friend very much for

:30:55.:30:58.

coming to Kent and visiting one of my local fruit farms and for

:30:59.:31:02.

listening to the growers who assembled? Particularly during the

:31:03.:31:08.

Easter recess. Could she please give me an update on the discussions she

:31:09.:31:12.

has had with the Home Office about introducing the much-needed

:31:13.:31:21.

agricultural permit scheme? Not only did I visit my honourable friend's

:31:22.:31:24.

constituency, but the honourable member for Maidstone had a lovely K

:31:25.:31:31.

bid day in the county I grew up in. She is right, this is an incredibly

:31:32.:31:36.

important issue, the government has assessed the the need of a pilot

:31:37.:31:39.

scheme for seasonal workers, and decided there is not the evidence

:31:40.:31:43.

that such a thing as needed. The migration advisory committee later

:31:44.:31:49.

this year will seek to get to the bottom of what is needed, and this

:31:50.:31:54.

government is committed to making huge success for the food and

:31:55.:31:57.

farming sector as we leave the EU. farming sector as we leave the EU.

:31:58.:32:06.

Topical questions. As this is the last DEFRA oral questions before the

:32:07.:32:10.

recess, I would like to remind the House of the government's twin

:32:11.:32:14.

ambitions in the farming environment. They are to grow more,

:32:15.:32:18.

sell more and export more British export food -- British food, and for

:32:19.:32:24.

us to be the first generation to leave the environment in a better

:32:25.:32:28.

state than when we found it. Last week we produced the first-ever

:32:29.:32:32.

litter strategy for England and announced a ?10 million grant scheme

:32:33.:32:36.

to distort peak winds. So we look forward to putting our case to the

:32:37.:32:41.

country. What is she doing to support fishermen, and in particular

:32:42.:32:45.

the under ten metres fleet, which is 33 feet in English money. I am glad

:32:46.:32:53.

he can still do the maths. The government has taken a number of

:32:54.:32:56.

measures to make the inshore fleet more economically sustainable. We

:32:57.:33:06.

have taken an unused quota and permanently transferred this to the

:33:07.:33:10.

under ten metres fleet. So we continue to top slice the quota

:33:11.:33:14.

uplift, which is now more than 1000 tonnes, in order to help the under

:33:15.:33:23.

ten metres fleet. Contrary to what the Minister said earlier, recent

:33:24.:33:27.

inflation figures show that food prices are rising at the fastest

:33:28.:33:31.

pace in three years, adding over 21p to be average household shopping

:33:32.:33:37.

bill in the past three months alone. When will the Secretary of State get

:33:38.:33:40.

a grip on the soaring costs of living affecting millions of

:33:41.:33:47.

families? As I pointed out earlier to the question that was raised, we

:33:48.:33:53.

saw the biggest spike in food prices in 2008. Food prices fell by around

:33:54.:33:59.

7% between 2014 and 2016. It is true that they have seen a modest

:34:00.:34:03.

increase over the last 12 months of 1.3%. Rising food prices simply

:34:04.:34:11.

added to the burden on those with little money for food. The Food

:34:12.:34:17.

Standards Agency reported that one in four low-income families struggle

:34:18.:34:24.

to eat regularly and equality and human rights commission have shown

:34:25.:34:26.

that disabled people are more than two times more likely to be living

:34:27.:34:33.

in food property. -- poverty. How long can the Secretary of State

:34:34.:34:41.

refused a -- to publish figures on this? We have always monitored

:34:42.:34:46.

spending on food through the wedding cost survey, and on spending food

:34:47.:34:53.

among the poor list has been stable for over a decade. This government

:34:54.:34:56.

has put more people in employment than ever before, taken more people

:34:57.:35:01.

off benefits and given them an income. That is how you tackle

:35:02.:35:07.

poverty. It is not just the coastal areas of Lincolnshire that are prone

:35:08.:35:11.

to flooding. Whilst the government has invested record amounts in

:35:12.:35:17.

concrete defences, inland areas are also prone to flooding in places

:35:18.:35:21.

like Lincolnshire. What role does the Minister think that flood

:35:22.:35:24.

management control can play in detecting properties and people?

:35:25.:35:31.

Here's right to raise the importance of natural flood management. I saw

:35:32.:35:36.

that myself on a visit to Leicester without monster competition for

:35:37.:35:41.

flood protection. In the right place it can absolutely help. We are

:35:42.:35:48.

investing ?15 million to fund natural flood management schemes

:35:49.:35:50.

across the country, and they will help support many communities from

:35:51.:35:55.

flood risks, and we will continue to build the evidence. Surely the

:35:56.:36:09.

Secretary of State... To prevent shortages in the food and drink

:36:10.:36:15.

industry. We have already addressed the issue of seasonal workers in the

:36:16.:36:22.

agricultural sector. As far as those workers who have already made their

:36:23.:36:27.

lives and work in this country, as the Prime Minister has said, it is

:36:28.:36:31.

her intention to ensure those rights are protected, and make sure the EU

:36:32.:36:40.

reciprocates, so protecting the very valuable contribution that EU

:36:41.:36:46.

citizens make in the UK, and vice versa. In the interest of customer

:36:47.:36:50.

choice and transparency, isn't it time that all halal and kosher meat

:36:51.:36:55.

products are properly labelled that the point of sale? This would

:36:56.:36:59.

benefit those people who want to buy it as well as those who do not want

:37:00.:37:07.

to. I know my honourable friend has been a long-standing campaigner on

:37:08.:37:13.

this. The government is committed to giving consumers as much

:37:14.:37:16.

transparency as possible and to improve labelling wherever we can. I

:37:17.:37:20.

know he understands there are some difficulties and there is no single

:37:21.:37:25.

definition of halal or kosher, which makes compulsory labelling complex.

:37:26.:37:29.

He is aware of European Union -- the European Union has been looking at

:37:30.:37:32.

this, and leaving the EU as an opportunity to look at these issues.

:37:33.:37:41.

The 20 year food plan, the 20 year environment plan, the supposedly

:37:42.:37:46.

environmentally enhancing strategies were supposed to be published before

:37:47.:37:51.

the summer, that is summer 2016. The Secretary of State has failed, has

:37:52.:37:55.

filled farmers, the food industry, and feel to keep our promise. People

:37:56.:38:00.

are now losing their jobs and incomes on her watch. When will

:38:01.:38:06.

these plans see the light of day? She might be aware there was a

:38:07.:38:11.

significant decision taken by the people of the United Kingdom last

:38:12.:38:14.

summer to leave the European Union. We have been very clear about our

:38:15.:38:19.

ambitions to make a huge success of the food and farming sector and to

:38:20.:38:23.

be the first generation that leads iron environment and a better place

:38:24.:38:27.

than when we found it. In terms of our plans, it is essential we can

:38:28.:38:32.

consult with stakeholders who have clear evidence to give us, clear

:38:33.:38:36.

ideas to give us, for a future outside of the EU that is more

:38:37.:38:45.

successful than ever. Further to the honourable member for Gainsborough's

:38:46.:38:48.

question earlier, would she give my constituents that the assurance they

:38:49.:38:53.

need that should the European Commission choose not to follow the

:38:54.:39:04.

recommendation and decide to ban the use of it anyway... The evidence is

:39:05.:39:13.

clear, they believe glyphosate is safe, it has also been in the UK

:39:14.:39:17.

intention to follow them on pesticide decisions, so we support

:39:18.:39:22.

this being authorised again. We will continue to have an evidence -based

:39:23.:39:29.

approach when we leave the EU. We need good science, good technology,

:39:30.:39:37.

good innovation, but what will she do about the fact that one of the

:39:38.:39:45.

leading scientific research bases has been taken over by China? This

:39:46.:39:56.

is another major company that the Chinese government have absorbed.

:39:57.:40:02.

What is she going to do about it? When it comes to pesticide

:40:03.:40:08.

protection, this is an integrated industry around the world, and it is

:40:09.:40:15.

not unusual to have others working within the UK. We have the best in

:40:16.:40:20.

the world, which is why companies choose to locate here. Fly-tipping

:40:21.:40:28.

like the countryside, and often causes real problems for those

:40:29.:40:31.

including farmers, such as in my constituency who have waste dumped

:40:32.:40:36.

on my land. Can he update the House on the steps of government is taking

:40:37.:40:42.

to tackle this? I was delighted we launched the letter strategy on the

:40:43.:40:48.

10th of April for England, seeking to cut ?800 million bill annually

:40:49.:40:54.

for tax players for cleaning up letter. So local councils will be

:40:55.:41:00.

able to fine fly-tipper is. We have also given them the powers to seize

:41:01.:41:06.

vehicles involved in fly-tipping. Integrated processing distribution

:41:07.:41:24.

and packaging systems are used in food plants across the UK and the

:41:25.:41:29.

Republic of Ireland. What assurances can begin to the companies there

:41:30.:41:34.

will be no border restrictions inhabiting the operations after

:41:35.:41:40.

Brexit? The Prime Minister has made clear she wants an ambitious and

:41:41.:41:43.

comprehensive free trade agreement. We are looking closely at the issue

:41:44.:41:47.

of border controls in respect of the border between Northern Ireland and

:41:48.:41:52.

the Irish Republic particularly, but we're talking regularly to industry

:41:53.:41:56.

on this, we have a meeting with some of the other devolved

:41:57.:42:00.

administrations later today, where we will look at these issues. Lamb

:42:01.:42:10.

prices are trading particularly less this year than last year existing.

:42:11.:42:14.

New Zealand lamb comes in in the winter when we have no lambs. There

:42:15.:42:18.

seems to be too much New Zealand lamb in the major retailers and not

:42:19.:42:22.

enough British lamb. I would like the ministers to bring that to the

:42:23.:42:25.

attention of the major retailers that British lamb should now be in

:42:26.:42:28.

the shops, it should not be New Zealand lamb. The honourable

:42:29.:42:33.

gentleman makes an important point. I know that at least, people really

:42:34.:42:38.

want to buy high-quality West Country lamb and Welsh lamb and

:42:39.:42:42.

Scottish lamb, and from every other part of the United Kingdom. I would

:42:43.:42:48.

say, there was an issue this year I believe, in that prices were very

:42:49.:42:51.

good during the winter, which meant a number of sheep producers decided

:42:52.:42:56.

to sell their lamb early, meaning there has been less British lamb

:42:57.:42:57.

available at this time. Will the Secretary of State to be

:42:58.:43:08.

pushing for a total ban on ivory sales in the 2017 manifesto,

:43:09.:43:13.

equivalent to the unrealised pledge in the 2015 manifesto? As I outlined

:43:14.:43:21.

to my honourable friend earlier, we are working very closely on -- very

:43:22.:43:25.

carefully on the proposals and hope to publish a consultation in due

:43:26.:43:31.

course. In the West Midlands, we are seeing a terrible spate of

:43:32.:43:36.

fly-tipping on a commercial scale, including hospital and household

:43:37.:43:39.

waste. Could I ask the Minister seriously to help the farmers with

:43:40.:43:44.

the costs of deterring the serious criminals from dumping these hazards

:43:45.:43:48.

on their land? Mr Speaker, I thank my right honourable friend for that

:43:49.:43:52.

question. We know this is a particular problem at the moment and

:43:53.:43:56.

that's where the Environment Agency is working with councils and farmers

:43:57.:43:59.

in order to try to stop this waste being dumped in the first place. We

:44:00.:44:03.

will continue to pursue waste crime as an urgent issue and friendly

:44:04.:44:09.

those people who to spoil our country side and display last rates

:44:10.:44:15.

deserve a strong sentence but we need the legislation to do that and

:44:16.:44:20.

this can take time. Does the Minister recognise that food

:44:21.:44:24.

processors will need to continue to recruit employees coming to the UK

:44:25.:44:30.

from other EU countries? Yes, absolutely. As I said earlier, the

:44:31.:44:35.

Home Office are looking very closely at what the future needs will be for

:44:36.:44:40.

businesses. We absolutely recognise that businesses in the UK, in order

:44:41.:44:45.

to thrive, will of course need access to some of the brightest and

:44:46.:44:48.

best from around the world and the migration advisory Council and a

:44:49.:44:52.

consultation with businesses will be looking at the needs later this

:44:53.:44:57.

year. Cleaning up the nation's bus fleet is an important point -- part

:44:58.:45:05.

of tackling air quality, but will the Minister agree that smaller

:45:06.:45:11.

companies will need time to adapt, particularly where the smallest

:45:12.:45:13.

vehicles -- the cleanest vehicles are not yet available on the

:45:14.:45:19.

second-hand market? My right honourable friend is correct to

:45:20.:45:22.

point out that we need to work with the industry. The Department for

:45:23.:45:25.

Transport has been working with manufacturers for some time to make

:45:26.:45:30.

the improvements so that, again, as a nation, we can make those

:45:31.:45:33.

technological changes that are important to improving our air

:45:34.:45:44.

quality from vehicle emissions. Questions, Pauline Latham. Number

:45:45.:45:52.

one, sir. I can inform the House that the National Audit Office

:45:53.:45:58.

published an investigation into the Cancer Drugs Fund in 2015. This

:45:59.:46:01.

investigation set up the facts related to the fund in what it had

:46:02.:46:08.

achieved. This followed up on a number of concerns raised during

:46:09.:46:11.

early work on improving cancer services. The investigation found

:46:12.:46:15.

that all parties agreed that the fund was not sustainable in its

:46:16.:46:19.

present format this time and that NHS England was proposing a new

:46:20.:46:21.

arrangement for the

:46:22.:46:22.