BYGONE DAYS: Pig scheme will reduce pig imports in favour of local produce

It was understood that the Minister of Agriculture for Northern Ireland had selected the majority of those who were to form the board to control the forthcoming Pigs Marketing Scheme, although the names had not yet been made available, reported the News Letter during this week in 1933.

Saturday, 7th August 2021, 11:00 am
Harvest time in the Sperrins. 13 September 1960. PRONI Reference: D4069/9/1. Picture: The Deputy Keeper of the Records, Public Record Office of Northern Ireland
Harvest time in the Sperrins. 13 September 1960. PRONI Reference: D4069/9/1. Picture: The Deputy Keeper of the Records, Public Record Office of Northern Ireland

The name of Dr James S Gordon, CBE (Permanent Secretary to the Ministry) had been freely mentioned in connection with the chairmanship. In the course of an explanatory statement which had been issued the ministry stated that it is hoped the scheme would come into operation “about the middle of September”.

The News Letter noted: “At present an opportunity exists for producers to make objections.”

IMPORTS RESTRICTED

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The statement issued by the ministry read as follows: “Under the Agricultural Marketing Act (Northern Ireland), 1933, the Ministry of Agriculture is empowered to frame a scheme for regulating the marketing of any agricultural product any case whose the Ministry is satisfied that a marketing scheme is necessary for the more efficient production and marketing of that agricultural product.

“The ministry proposes to use the powers which have been conferred upon it in order to frame scheme for regulating the marketing of pigs, but before doing so it has issued a draft scheme in order to facilitate consultations with pig producers and other interests concerned.”

The statement continued: “The reason for the introduction of pig marketing scheme for Northern Ireland is to enable pig producers in Northern Ireland to share in the benefits which are expected to be obtained a result of the control and limitation of imports of bacon and hams from abroad.

“Pig farmers will recall that at the beginning 1932 the National Government, which had come into power in Great Britain a few months previously, agreed that provided a satisfactory scheme could arranged for the development of bacon production home they were prepared to introduce restriction of imports of bacon and hams from abroad.

“In July of this year the Imperial Government obtained from Parliament the necessary power to enable them to carry into effect this promise to restrict imports of bacon and to develop the home production of this product.

“It is proposed that the total sales of bacon in the United Kingdom shall be restricted to a quantity which will be remunerative to the producer and fair to the consumer.

“This total quantity bacon which can be sold, will be divided into two parts – the supply and the home produced supply. It is intended that the home produced supply shall increase progressively while corresponding reduction takes place the imports from abroad.”

THE CROPS IN TYRONE

The prospect bountiful harvest throughout East and South Tyrone were excellent, reported the News Letter during this week in 1933.

A correspondent wrote: “Favourable weather permitted the increased sowing grain and cereal crops much earlier than usual, and the absence of May frosts allowed the early potato crops to be marketed a fortnight in advance of previous years.

“The cutting of meadow and seed hay crops is completed, and the favourable weather was responsible for the rapid saying of the hay.

“Seasonal workers, however, did not receive the usual employment, farmers in the brilliant sunshine being in many instances to complete the work without outside aid.”

The correspondent added: “The corn crop is ripening quickly and well above the average, while the potato fields, for which Tyrone is noted, never looked healthier. The price for early potatoes were well maintained throughout July, and proved welcome source income to the fanning community.

“Year by year the growing flax is diminishing, and this season there is less than ever. The poor prices for last year’s flax discouraged the sowing this troublesome, though formerly remunerative, crop.”