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Tomato Imports

Volume 124: debated on Wednesday 9 December 1987

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To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what system he has to ensure that on occasions when it is known that growing conditions in the Canary Islands are going to give rise to exports of tomatoes of poor intrinsic condition, the Horticultural Inspectorate is deployed to ensure that no out-of-grade fruit leaves the dockside in the United Kingdom or is admitted in roll on-roll off vehicles from the continent.

[holding answer 8 December 1987]: When problems with quality of horticultural imports arise or are expected, it is the practice to redeploy horticultural marketing inspectors, so as to intensify quality control at main points of entry. Produce failing to meet minimum standards is outgraded. Although such intensive action has not so far been needed for the Canary Islands tomatoes, we would not hesitate to take action if necessary.