The following Question stood upon the Order Paper in the name of Major WISE:
52. To ask the Minister of Food if he will make a statement on the results of the first year's work of the Overseas Food Corporation in Queensland.
With your permission, Mr. Speaker, I should like to answer Question No. 52.The House will recall that a little more than a year ago the Overseas Food Corporation, with the active co-operation of the Queensland Government, prepared a scheme for the development of hitherto uncultivated land in Queensland, in order to produce coarse grains and later pig meat for the United Kingdom. This scheme was launched in April, 1948, by means of the establishment of the Queensland British Food Corporation, formed jointly by the Overseas Food Corporation and the Queensland Government. At that time it was hoped to plant 20,000 acres with sorghum during the first year and to harvest a crop of between 400,000 and 600,000 bushels. In the event 29,286 acres were planted for the first year's harvest. Moreover, thanks to favourable rains, the latest estimate is that the crop, which is now being harvested, will be at least 1 million bushels, that is approximately double the original estimate. The first cargoes of grain will leave Queensland for this country in about six weeks' time. I am sure the House will wish to congratulate the Overseas Food Corporation, the Queensland British Food Corporation, and in particular the men on the job in Queensland, on this remarkable achievement.