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National Fallen Stock Company

Volume 450: debated on Thursday 19 October 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the reason was for the reduction in the allocation of funding to the National Fallen Stock Company; and what plans he has to retain and enhance membership of the company. (94125)

There has been no reduction in funding to the National Fallen Stock Company. Government allocated £20 million for the scheme over a three-year period in order to help with initial pump priming. We have recently agreed to extend that funding for a further year, but it was always intended that central Government's contribution would reduce over time. The recent reduction in the percentage contribution to farmers' collection costs reflects this approach.

Last year the Government commissioned an independent review of the National Fallen Stock Scheme to: examine the operation of the scheme to date; make recommendations for retaining and enhancing the membership of the scheme in the future; and identify the transitional steps needed to move towards a post-subsidy situation. The review team delivered its recommendations in April 2006. The Government are now working closely with the National Fallen Stock Company to develop appropriate responses. We aim to publish these later this year.