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DEFRA MUST EXPLAIN HOW CONTAMINATED SEEDS REACHED FARMS - GEORGE

November 13, 2003 12:00 AM

Andrew George MP for St IvesResponding to reports that ring rot has been discovered on potato farms in Wales Andrew George MP, Liberal Democrat Shadow Rural Affairs Secretary, commented:

"This case illustrates the need to ensure import controls on agricultural products are adequate.

"I understand the batch infected with ring rot had been checked by UK authorities. If this is the case questions must be asked as to why the disease wasn't detected. It is vital that DEFRA now explain why these infected seeds were allowed to slip through

"If the infected seeds can be traced back to Holland then the case can be made for commercial compensation. British taxpayers should not be asked to pick up the bill for any compensation."