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Volume 897: debated on Monday 4 August 1975

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asked the Secretary of State for Wales what plans he has to prevent a recurrence of the fodder shortage in livestock areas in Wales last winter; and if he will make a statement.

It is too early yet to make a full assessment of the fodder situation in Wales, but a close and continuing review is being made through the summer. Although yields have been light, the quality of hay and silage harvested so far has been generally very good. Grass has recovered well following the recent rains and there are prospects for further cuts, especially of silage. Supplies of cereals and proteins are adequate. The rains should also have helped improve the situation with regard to other fodder crops. The Agricultural Development and Advisory Service has continued an advisory programme to promote improved forage conservation and grass utilisation. It behoves all concerned to make the most of what is available, and in this connection I am pleased to note the steps being taken by leaders of the industry to encourage the maximum conservation of straw for feed.