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Chewing Gum

Mr. Pike: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what (a) representations she has received from and (b) discussions he has had with (i) local authorities and (ii) manufacturers with regard to cleaning up chewing gum; how many local authorities have charged people with chewing gum litter under the Environmental Protection Act 1990; what action she plans to take to ensure that local authorities take action against chewing gum offenders; what action she plans to take regarding cleaning up chewing gum litter; and if she will make a statement. [69160]

Mr. Meacher: DEFRA has not received direct representation from, or had discussions with, local authorities about the clear up of chewing gum. However, the environmental charity, Environmental Campaigns (ENCAMS), who DEFRA grant funds, has been working with the Wrigley's Company and local authorities over many years to develop best practice to clear up gum. ENCAMS has produced advice and guidance on prevention and cleansing for local authorities under the banner, "Become an Authority on Gum".

Information on how many local authorities have charged people with chewing gum litter under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 is not collected

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centrally by my Department. However, in 2000–01, 2,310 fixed penalty notices (FPNs) were issued for litter offences. The Department increased the FPN for littering offences from £25 to £50 on 1 April, and we are currently looking to see how local authorities will be able to retain these moneys and redirect the funds to measures that improve local environmental quality; which could include cleaning up chewing gum.


Mr. Sayeed: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what types of waste, previously not hazardous waste, will be reclassified as hazardous waste. [69235]

Mr. Meacher: The European Hazardous Waste List (94/904/EC) has recently been extensively revised, and over 200 additions have been made. It will be transposed into UK law as part of the current review of the UK special waste regulations. The most significant additions include end-of-life vehicles containing hazardous liquids or components, electrical equipment containing CFC/ HCFC/HFC (fridges/freezers), and the following items if they contain hazardous substances: electrical equipment, contaminated soils, insulation materials and bottom ash.

Environmental Adviser

Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs who has been appointed as Environmental Adviser to the Minister for the Environment. [63850]

Mr. Meacher: Stephen Hale was appointed as Environmental Policy Adviser to the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs on 17 June.


Paddy Tipping: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many payments of financial support under the CAP in England and Wales were (a) between £200,000 and £499,999, (b) between £500,000 and £999,999 and (c) in excess of £1 million, in the last year for which figures are available. [70044]

Mr. Morley: The following table gives numbers of individual payments of financial support under the CAP to addresses in England and Wales in each category. Some businesses may have received more than one payment, or may have had trading interests outside the region of the address to which the payments were made.

£200,000 to £499,999£500,000 to £999,999Over £1 million
Grants and subsidies
Market support

(6) Relates to the EAGGF budget year ending in 2000, the last year for which those figures were readily available.


Other figures relate to the 12 months ending June 2002.

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Sheep Dips

Mr. Tyler: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the answer of 23 January 2002, Official Report, column 933W, when the research study by CBD Porton Down into the dose effect profiles for organophosphate sheep dips on brain electrical activity and sensitive behaviour indices in non-human primates will be completed. [69407]

Mr. Morley [holding answer 15 July 2002]: The laboratory work on this research study has been completed and a statistical analysis of the results is currently being carried out. We anticipate receiving a final report of its findings before the end of September this year.

Hill Farmers

Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what recent assessment she had made of the ability of hill farmers to diversify into other areas of business. [70371]

Alun Michael: The Government recognise that all farms have their own set of individual circumstances which influence the scope for diversification and that the same approach will not be appropriate in all

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circumstances. The opportunity to pursue a successful diversification enterprise will depend upon a range of factors, including the resources and assets of the farm, the skills and expertise of the farmer and their family, and the farm's geographic circumstances.

In England, DEFRA provides grants for farmers seeking to pursue good diversification projects under the Rural Enterprise Scheme, which forms part of the England Rural Development Programme. The Department also offers assistance in the form of free planning consultancy advice to farmers who intend to pursue an eligible diversification project through the Rural Enterprise Scheme and we are considering how to improve the provision of help and information to farmers considering diversifying their business.

Dairy Industry

Mr. Wiggin: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many dairy (a) farms and (b) businesses have been (i) opened and (ii) closed in the last five years, broken down by region. [68992]

Mr. Morley: The Department does not hold the precise information sought. However, according to figures from the June Census, the number of dairy farms by region in England over the last five years was as follows:

1. Number of holdings classified as farm type dairy

Government office region19971998199920002001
North East region325285275251215
North West region including Merseyside4,2414,0583,9043,6302,983
Yorkshire and Humberside region1,6541,5321,4841,3581,306
East Midlands region1,3361,2731,2261,1221,156
West Midlands region2,6942,5312,4462,3052,213
East of England region250239231203215
South East region including Greater London972888864779805
South West region6,5356,2075,8835,4785,213

2. Number of holdings with any dairy cows

Government office regions19971998199920002001
North East region510467428398343
North West region including Merseyside4,9934,8624,6714,3153,440
Yorkshire and Humberside region2,3402,2482,1291,9831,814
East Midlands region1,8361,7851,7291,5991,567
West Midlands region3,3543,2613,1242,9362,768
East of England region641637584517527
South East region including Greater London1,5181,5001,4311,3501,321
South West region7,7407,5567,2306,8196,345


1. Holdings shown as of June each year, not 'opened' or 'closed'.

2. Table 1 shows holdings where dairy farming is the predominant activity.

3. Table 2 shows holdings which returned at least one dairy cow in the June Census.

4. A dairy cow is classed as any dairy cow or heifer that has calved.

5. All figures relate to main holdings only.


June Agricultural and Horticultural Census

British Farmers

Mr. Wiggin: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what recent steps she has taken to help British farmers remain competitive in international markets; and if she will make a statement. [69003]

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Mr. Morley: The Government want the farming industry to succeed and become more competitive. That is one reason why we established the Policy Commission on the Future of Farming and Food and why, following its report, we will launch a new strategy for sustainable food and farming in England in the autumn.

We have already demonstrated our commitment to helping food and farming business increase their competitiveness. For example, we plan to introduce a new Agriculture Development Scheme offering grants to help farmers improve their competitiveness through better marketing. The proposed priorities are developing and improving assurance schemes, encouraging co-operation/ collaboration, benefiting primary producers and benchmarking and spread of best practice.

Success is also dependent on changes at the international level. The Government are working to bring farmers closer to their markets by securing a more economically rational Common Agricultural Policy and further liberalisation of agricultural trade in the World Trade Organisation negotiations.

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