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Maize-Growing Areas

Volume 438: debated on Wednesday 18 June 1947

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asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies what steps are being taken to develop the maize-growing areas in South Africa, Rhodesia, East Africa and Kenya, with a view to making this country less dependent on supplies from the Argentine and other sources.

It is not within my province to deal with matters affecting South Africa or Southern Rhodesia. As regards East Africa, the whole maize production is likely to be required for local consumption. Production was maintained at a high level during the war at the risk of soil erosion and loss of soil fertility, and these dangers limit the possibility of increased production now. Production will, however, be kept at as high a level as possible.

Will the right hon. Gentleman make it clear that in the case of Northern Rhodesia there is a great deal of opportunity for further maize-growing, and all that is required, which I understand the Government have provided, is a guaranteed price over a number of years?

Yes, there is a guaranteed price, and the whole problem of maize production and the production of other food crops is now receiving the closest attention.