The Agriculture Committee is appointed to examine on behalf of the House of Commons the expenditure, administration and policy of the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (and any associated public bodies). Its constitution and powers are set out in House of Commons Standing Order No. 152.
The Committee has a maximum of eleven members, of whom the quorum for any formal proceedings is three. The members of the Committee are appointed by the House and unless discharged remain on the Committee until the next dissolution of Parliament. The present membership of the Committee is as follows:
Mr David Borrow (Labour, South Ribble)
Mr David Curry (Conservative, Skipton and Ripon)
Mr David Drew (Labour, Stroud)
Mr Alan Hurst (Labour, Braintree)
Mr Michael Jack (Conservative, Fylde)
Mr Paul Marsden (Labour, Shrewsbury and Atcham)
Mr Austin Mitchell (Labour, Great Grimsby)
Mr Lembit Öpik (Liberal Democrat, Montgomeryshire)
Mr Owen Paterson (Conservative, North Shropshire)
Mr Mark Todd (Labour, South Derbyshire)
Dr George Turner (Labour, North West Norfolk)
On 15 February 2000, the Committee elected Mr David Curry as its Chairman.1
The Committee has the power to require the submission of written evidence and documents, to examine witnesses, and to make Reports to the House. In the footnotes to this Report, references to oral evidence are indicated by 'Q' followed by the question number, references to the written evidence are indicated by 'Ev' followed by a page number.
The Committee may meet at any time (except when Parliament is prorogued or dissolved) and at any place within the United Kingdom. The Committee may meet concurrently with other committees or sub-committees established under Standing Order No. 152 for the purpose of deliberating, taking evidence or considering draft reports, and with the House's European Scrutiny Committee (or any of its sub-committees) and Environmental Audit Committee for the purpose of deliberating or taking evidence. The Committee may exchange documents and evidence with any of these committees, as well as with the House's Public Accounts and Deregulation Committees.
The Reports and evidence of the Committee are published by The Stationery Office by Order of the House. All publications of the Committee (including press notices) are on the internet at www.parliament.uk/commons/selcom/agrihome.htm. A list of Reports of the Committee in the present Parliament is at the end of this volume.
All correspondence should be addressed to the Clerk of the Agriculture Committee, Committee Office, 7 Millbank, London SW1P 3JA. The telephone number for general inquiries is 020 7219 3262; the Committee's e-mail address is: [email protected].
1On 16 July 1997, the Committee elected Mr Peter Luff as its Chairman. He was discharged on 21 February 2000.