Wednesday, 6 November 1929
Dáil Éireann Debate
Minister for Agriculture (Mr. Hogan): I move: “In line 31, page 4, to insert after the word “fowls” the words “turkeys, geese.” The section will then read: “The word `poultry' means and includes domestic fowls, turkeys, geese and ducks.” I understand that fowls are hens.
(3) Subject to the provisions of this Act in relation to the registration of premises in any particular register, premises registered in the register of cattle slaughtering premises, or in the register of pig slaughtering premises, or in the register of sheep slaughtering premises, or in the register of goat slaughtering premises shall be capable of being registered in any other or others of those registers but shall not be capable of being registered in the register of horse slaughtering premises or the register of crating premises.
Mr. O'Hanlon: I move amendment 1. As the sub-section stands at present it precludes the possibility of these premises which are registered for the slaughter of cattle, sheep, pigs, or goats from being used for carrying on the business of crating. Having regard to the principle underlying this Bill, I am rather astonished to find this exception made and before saying what is in my mind on the question I would like an explanation from the Minister as to why the crating premises are excluded from registration.
Mr. Hogan: This is a little bit involved. In fact it is very involved. I think Deputy O'Hanlon's point is this. There are various premises in the country, for instance, where pork is killed and crated, but apparently under sub-sections (1) and (3) when read together the pigs cannot be slaughtered and crated in the same premises. That is really the grievance as far as I know. It is to remove that grievance that the amendments suggested by Deputy O'Hanlon and Deputy Ryan are put on the Paper. The present position is that most of the pork exporters both slaughter their pigs and crate the pork in the same premises, but you have other exporters who slaughter the pork and then send the pork to crating premises near the port of export. It was not the intention to prevent the owner of say a pig-slaughtering premises from crating the pigs on the premises nor was it the intention to compel him to crate the pigs in a crating premises, nor was it the intentión either to compel him to pay a registration fee in respect to crating premises which are contained within the slaughtering premises.
There is a question as between the lawyers as to whether as the Bill now stands it is possible for a premises which is in fact a pig slaughtering premises to be used also as a crating premises. Just read Section 5, sub-section (f): “The Minister shall cause to be kept (that is to say the Minister  must keep) a register (to be called and known as the register of crating premises) of premises in Saerstát Eireann in which the business of crating for export pork, mutton and lamb or any of them is carried on.” It would look as if under that section and sub-section the Minister is coerced into keeping a register not only of the slaughtering premises but of the crating premises as well, even though that crating premises is within the slaughtering premises, and then when you come to sub-section (3) there is a provision which amounts to this, that premises registered as a slaughtering premises shall not be registered as a crating premises.
Therefore, it appears from the sections as they stand that any owner of a slaughtering premises who at present crates his pigs in the premises cannot in the future, if this Bill is passed, crate his pigs in the premises. That is the grievance, I take it. My own view at present is that as the Bill stands that is the position, but I want to say that is not shared by the draftsmen. They are not quite clear on that point. I do not want to go into the involved legal arguments in connection with it, but I suggest as this Bill must come up on Report, and as on Report there will surely be a number of amendments, and as it is absolutely certain that this Bill will be recommitted on Report, that these amendments should be left over. I will guarantee either to satisfy myself that at present the exporter may crate his pigs in the premises in which he slaughters them or, if not, to introduce amendments which will enable him to do so.
Subject to the provisions of this Act in relation to the registration of premises in any particular register, premises registered in the register of cattle slaughtering premises, or in the register of pig slaughtering premises, or in the register of sheep slaughtering premises or in the register of goat slaughtering premises, or in the register of crating premises, shall be capable of being registered in any other or others of those registers, but shall not be capable of being registered in the register of horse slaughtering premises or the register of crating premises.
The Deputy's suggestion is that crating premises shall be capable of being registered. The implications of that would be that the owner of the premises should apply for registration of the premises as crating premises and pay a pound registration fee, as well as a pound registration fee in respect of the registration of the same premises as slaughtering premises. I take it the Deputy does not want that. That is the first objection to an amendment like that. I would also require to examine further the implications of accepting that amendment. It may or may not be the best way of doing it, but I will give a definite undertaking to the Deputy. It is only a question of drafting, and none of us are draftsmen. I will see to it before the Report Stage that pigs may be slaughtered and pork exported from the same premises in which they are crated without any extra registration fee. Is not that what the Deputy wants?
Mr. O'Hanlon: No. I approach this entirely apart from the question of fees. As I gather from the principle of this Bill, it is the object of the Minister to have Irish products put on the market in the best possible condition with regard to cleanliness, quality and price. I put it to the Minister that I would prefer to put in the Bill that they must be crated on the premises, and then  there will not be any doubt about it. If it is the view that you are to slaughter pigs on one premises and take the carcase away to other premises, you are unfitting the carcase for sale in a proper condition. I do not want to say exactly what I think, but I do believe, and I put it to the Minister that in the drafting of this Bill there was some little mental reservation in the minds of those who put this before the Minister—that there are vested interests in crating which ought to be safeguarded. I want to safeguard the interests of the farmer.
Mr. Hogan: There is not the slightest foundation for that suggestion that anyone gives twopence for the crating interests. I do not know who they are. The Deputy wants me to insert in the Bill a provision to the effect that all pork must be crated on the premises on which it is slaughtered.
Mr. Hogan: I will try to convince the Deputy. I want to find out what he wants first. Undoubtedly he desires that a man shall have the option of crating his pork on the premises. The Deputy desires that to start with.
Mr. Hogan: There is a doubt as to whether that can be done as the Bill stands. I give an undertaking to remove that, but that will require very careful examination by the draftsman, to see whether not only must there be an amendment inserted there but in other parts of the Bill. When you come to the second point, the second point being that you go a step further and say all pork must be crated on the premises——
An Ceann Comhairle: Perhaps it should be made clear that the suggestion the Minister has made is likely to be adopted. When amendments are tabled for Report it is practically certain that the Minister will move that the Bill be recommitted, which will mean that there are still two stages on which amendments may be moved.
(1) Every application for the registration of any premises under this Part of this Act or for the alteration or cancellation of any such registration shall be made in writing in the prescribed form and manner and shall contain the prescribed particulars.
(3) Every refusal by the Minister of an application for the registration of any premises under this Part of this Act, including any refusal on the grounds of undue expense or difficulty in providing  suitable veterinary examination under this Act, shall state the reason for such refusal.
It appears to me that the Minister has several ways of refusing a licence without coming to this. For instance, under Section 6 there is a whole list of conditions that must be fulfilled before the registration of the premises may be granted. I think that this is a thing that may be used in a very unfair way. For instance, there are some fairly important centres where there would not be a veterinary inspector employed at present. One of these centres might be ideal for a meat factory. The town of Arklow is one place where there is no veterinary inspector, and Arklow would be an ideal centre for the export of mutton. If an enterprising man who was willing to fulfil all the other conditions in regard to structural suitability, cleanliness, and so on, wanted to start a factory he could be turned down on this condition, on the grounds that the cost of the veterinary inspection would be too high. I think the Minister has sufficient powers to prevent any man starting without this additional power. I would like to know what he has to say before going further.
Mr. Hogan: This is one of the amendments that, to my mind, do not matter a lot. The Deputy mentioned that if an enterprising man proposed to establish some kind of a factory in Arklow, because there is no veterinary surgeon there the Minister might refuse to give the necessary licence, notwithstanding that the man was ready to conform to all the other requirements. If such a thing occurred the Minister could not possibly get away with it in the Dáil. There are equally drastic powers taken in the Eggs Act and the Dairy Produce Act. What I am  going to say now applies not only to this amendment, but to other amendments that will come later. In no single case has any matter arising under these Acts relating to the administration of the Acts by the Minister ever been brought to the Dáil. As regards the case the Deputy mentioned, if he raised it in the Dáil he would have all details, he would be in a position to show that this man was a substantial man, and had everything ready; that he was prepared to give so much employment there; that it was a suitable place, and the farmers were ready to send in the pigs and so on. And all that development was to be held up because the Minister considered veterinary inspection there would be too expensive. No Minister could do so, and that is the real safeguard against any of the drastic powers that are contained, not only in this Act, but contained equally in the three Acts that have already been passed. The Deputy will find that a real safeguard and a real limitation on the exercise of arbitrary powers by the Minister. The Dáil is there, and the Minister can be challenged in the Dáil and made to justify a case. This is only the fourth of a series of Acts, some of which have been in operation three or four years. Nevertheless, not one single case of hardship has ever been brought up. That is not due in any way to the personal qualities of the civil servants or of the Minister who is responsible. It could not be. It is due to the fact that a Minister must realise when he is taking action in any of these cases, especially in a non-political matter of this sort where things are debated more on their merits, that he must stand over his action and prove, not only to his own party but to the Dáil generally, that his action was sound.
I will put it to the Deputy again that that is the real safeguard not only in connection with this particular amendment, but with other amendments. I will point out our intention in this regard. We would not dream of interfering with a factory in Arklow. But take another  extreme case. Take it that there was a veterinary inspector in Schull, in West Cork, and that there was a place ten miles away also on the coast where somebody wanted to start a factory. He might have personal reasons. There might be disputes with the Ministry. There might be other reasons which went to the merits of the case why he wanted to start this factory five or six miles outside Schull. There is no railway in Schull; neither is there a railway five or six miles away. If he insisted, out of cussedness, on putting up a factory five or six miles outside Schull when Schull was the obvious place from the point of view of the farmers, surely the Minister should have some discretion—in an extreme case like that. That is an extreme case on the one side. Deputy Ryan has quoted an extreme case on the other, but I am pointing out that extreme cases on one side or the other must be provided for. The best safeguard is the fact that the Dáil is there to criticise any action that the Minister may take. As a matter of fact, I am not keen on that—I do not know that it will arise, but I should like to have it in. If I am pressed I shall take it out.
An Ceann Comhairle: With regard to the amendments to Section 12, the amendments to Section 12 and amendments 43 and 44 to the Schedule raise the same point, namely, what will the maximum fee be, and I am desirous of not putting the question in any way that would prevent Deputies' proposals with regard to the fee being put to the Committee. It seems to the Chair that the most profitable way of discussing the question, which is all-important, namely, the question of  the amount of the licence fee, would be to take Section 12 now first without taking any of the amendments, and on the discussion of Section 12 to hear the Minister, to hear the Deputies who have amendments 6 and 7 down and the other amendments, 43 and 44, come to a conclusion on Section 12, and then take these amendments in whatever form might be most suitable, either on the Schedule or on Section 12, at the next Committee Stage. Of course, if Deputy O'Hanlon insists on amendment 7, we will take it, but Deputy Ryan's amendment contains more.
An Ceann Comhairle: Certainly. When we find out what the Committee thinks about this main point of the licence fee, then, when the Bill is recommitted, the Deputy, if he still desires to do so, can move his amendment.
An Ceann Comhairle: I think it would be better not to do so, because if I take the section, I cannot take an amendment to the section. I am asking the Deputy to postpone this amendment to the next Stage, when he can, in fact, obtain a Committee discussion on the points raised. We shall now hear the Minister on the section.
There shall be paid to the Minister in respect of every half-year by every licensed exporter in respect of each exporter's licence held by him at any time during such half-year or at any time during  the preceding half-year contained in the same year a fee (in this Act referred to as an exporter's half-yearly fee) computed in accordance with the rules set out in the Schedule to this Act.
The Schedule provides that the minimum fee shall be £75, so that in respect of each exporter's licence there is a minimum fee of £75. In other words, if the exporter had a licence for beef there would be a minimum fee of £75; if he had a licence for beef and mutton there would be a fee of £75 for each, that is, £150; if he had a licence for beef, mutton and pork, there would be a minimum of three times £75—£225. That is the Bill as it stands. I first propose to alter that and to make the maximum minimum fee—if I might put it that way—£75, no matter how many licences the exporter may have. That is number one. Number two: I propose to accept, as I have already indicated. the principle set out in Deputy O'Dwyer's amendment, and in Deputy Bennett's and Deputy Wolfe's amendment—amendments 43 and 44 to the Schedule. Amendment 43 reads:
“(5) Notwithstanding anything contained in the foregoing provisions of this Schedule the minimum fee in respect of a beef exporter's licence or a pork exporter's licence shall be £50 and the minimum fee in respect of a mutton exporter's licence, a goat flesh exporter's licence or a horse flesh exporter's licence, shall be £25.”
I propose to accept that—that is to say, I propose that the exporter who has only one licence shall pay a minimum of £50, if it is a beef licence, and £50 if it is a pork licence, and £25 if it is a mutton licence. I also propose to accept amendment 44, which reads:
“(5) Notwithstanding anything in this Schedule contained, where  a person is the holder of two or more exporter's licences in respect of the same premises, if one of those licences is a beef exporter's licence or a pork exporter's licence, the total minimum fees in respect of all such licences shall be £75 and if none of those licences is a beef exporter's licence or a pork exporter's licence, the total minimum fees in respect of all such licences shall be £50.”
Therefore, if an exporter holds two licences, and if these two licences are a beef licence and a pork licence, his minimum fee shall be £75. If he holds a beef exporter's licence and a mutton exporter's licence, the minimum fee shall be £75. If he holds a pork exporter's licence and a mutton exporter's licence, the minimum shall be £75. But if he holds a mutton exporter's licence alone, it will be £25.
It is rather complicated and I shall go over it again. First of all, the greatest fee that can be paid as a lump sum is £75, and that can only be paid under the conditions set out in amendment 44. In other words if he has a series of licences, and one of the series is beef or pork, the minimum fee shall be £75. If he has any other series except that series, for instance, if he has mutton and goat flesh, the minimum shall be £50. I am dealing with a case where a man has a series of licences. This Bill deals with beef, mutton, pork, goat flesh and horse flesh. We might for simplicity leave out goat flesh and horse flesh, as there will be no export. Let us confine ourselves to beef, mutton and pork. If a man has a series of licences, and one of these is a beef licence, then the minimum fee is £75. If he has a series of licences, and one of them is a pork licence, the minimum fee is £75. But if he has a series of licences which does not include pork or beef, and one of which is a mutton licence, it is £50.
Mr. Hogan: Two are a series. If he has more than one licence, and one is a beef or a pork licence, it is £75. If he has a mutton licence alone, it is £25. I will not mind the Schedule at all, but shall put it in my own way. If he has more than one licence, and if any one of these licences is a beef or pork licence, the minimum fee is £75. If he has a mutton licence alone, the minimum is £25. If he has a beef licence alone, it is £50, and if he has a pork licence alone it is £50.
These are the proposals contained in these two amendments. Now these two amendments are really not properly drafted. They are quite simple in their way; they leave the schedule and the section as they stand, and they begin by saying: “Notwithstanding anything contained in the foregoing provisions.” Of course, you cannot repeal the foregoing provisions simply by submitting an amendment which contains the words I have read. But I propose to accept the figures set out in the two amendments, and I propose to ask the draftsman to make the necessary changes both in Section 12 and in the Schedule. That is, so much in regard to the fees. With regard to the point contained in the amendments of Deputy Ryan and Deputy O'Hanlon. Deputy Ryan suggests a deposit of £10, and Deputy O'Hanlon suggests a deposit of £12 10s. I suggest £20, but I am quite ready to split the difference and to make it £15, and I propose to insert the necessary provision to that effect. I do not propose to agree with Deputy Ryan's suggestion, which prescribes that a sum of 6d. shall be paid, instead of one shilling, in the case of cattle, or the other changes in regard to the prescribed sum for pork or mutton or lamb.
Mr. Gorey: Any of the people who take out these licences. We understood it might be contemplated that those who took out licences would get veterinary inspection under the Board of Health. It will be a hardship on people setting up business if they are going to get no service.
Mr. Gorey: What is the money to be taken from the people for? Veterinary inspection is what is wanted. If we are to have regard for the name of the products of the country we must have veterinary inspection. A lot of small factories have no such inspection. If, in addition, these people have to pay these sums they will suffer a very severe handicap. If you charge £75 or £50 it is a large amount of money, and there ought to be some service given in return. Free veterinary inspection would be an ideal form of return.
Mr. Moore: Will the Minister not give some explanation as to why he is discriminating between the different meats? Why is he charging a higher licence where beef and pork are the articles exported than where neither beef nor pork is exported?
Mr. Hogan: Beef and pork are the big items. Factories engaged in the  beef and pork trade are factories with a big turnover. A factory dealing with lamb is a small trade and obviously there should be some relation between the fee and the turnover. You have factories in places where they do a lamb trade or a mutton trade alone. These factories should not be asked to pay the same fee as, say, a bacon factory, where every pig, whether for bacon or pork, has to be inspected, and where, perhaps, twenty or thirty, or forty or fifty thousand pigs a year are dealt with. You should not charge the same amount to a small factory as to a big one, in the same way as you should not charge as much in respect to a lamb as in respect to a bullock. There must be some relation between the fee and the value of the trade.
Dr. Ryan: As regards the amendment, the form in which I first put it was to delete the section altogether and to substitute for it this section. I do not know if the Minister understood that I meant the £25 registration fee to cover all and that there should be no further fee.
Dr. Ryan: If I put this down for the next Committee Stage, I should like to hold on to the point that the fee should be returned if registration is not granted. Will there be such another opportunity for that?
An Ceann Comhairle: Yes. When we complete this stage we will have to get the Minister's amendments, which he has now promised to circulate, and I think we would have to take the next stage at least one week  after Deputies have had these amendments before them, so that, for example, Deputy Ryan can, if he chooses, propose to amend the Minister's proposed amendments.
Mr. Moore: I suggest the Minister should consider very carefully his new proposals before that section is again submitted. I think it is going to handicap enterprise a good deal. Take a small factory trading exclusively in lamb. If at a particular time there is a boom in pork and they are asked if they could supply some pork, would it not mean a great hardship if for a few weeks' trade they were obliged to pay so big an additional fee as is proposed here. You may have that happen any day of the week. As a matter of fact, it has been represented to me that a small factory in my own constituency has had that experience. They started with lamb. Some of their people in London urged them to supply pork for a particular period. Their factory is going to feel the expense of these fees very considerably, and it would be a loss not only to the proprietor and his customers but to the meat trade for anything to happen to hurt a small efficient firm of that kind. That is plain, if I am to go by what I have before me in the way of testimonials from the people whom they are supplying. For instance, letters of this kind have been written to the proprietor of the particular firm that I am speaking of:
Since the placing of the embargo on continental meats and the consequent effort on the part of Irish traders to develop the dead meat trade between Ireland and Smithfield, many exporters have ventured into the business, and it has only been those who have succeeded in handling the goods in an efficient and proper manner who have been able to make the venture  sufficiently successful to continue, many in the meanwhile having gone out.
We consider that your consignments can be classified among the best of those which come to London, both as regards quality, dressing and general handling, and we would also go so far as to say that in our opinion you as consistent and regular consignors can rightly be grouped amongst those to whom the credit of developing the dead-meat trade with London is due.
We are pleased to testify that all carcases of beef, mutton, and pork consigned to us during the past 12 months have arrived in a good and marketable condition, mainly due to the care exercised in the shape of packing and wrapping.
In reply to yours of the 6th. We have great pleasure in stating that the pigs we have received from you have always been the best dressed, best condition, and of the best quality, and compare very favourably with any senders from Ireland.
That is one of the smallest firms in the meat exporting trade. It has been represented to me that the fees that were in the Bill originally would have made it impossible for that factory to carry on. It has also been represented to me that the amended fees proposed will also involve great hardship. I suggest to the Minister, before he makes up his mind finally on the matter, that he should consider whether he will not be handicapping efficient people of  that kind, and whether he will not be doing a disservice to the meat trade by putting on restrictions which would have the effect of preventing those engaged in a particular branch from developing a seasonal trade or a trade that would be called for when particularly high prices prevailed over a short period.
Mr. Gorey: I take an opposite view to that expressed by Deputy Moore. If it is true that the examination will be so severe that it will be very hard to get even sound meat through, the reason for that is that every class of carcase, sound and unsound, has been sent indiscriminately to England and Scotland. There has been no examination in the past, the result being that sound and unsound carcases have gone out of the country indiscriminately. I do not know that some of the people who have been handling pork in the past could be described as having small factories. For the sake of courtesy you can give them that title, but the actual position has been that cows and pigs have been going indiscriminately out of the country without any examination whatever. People who want to do their business well; and who want to uphold the credit of this State, have had to appoint officials themselves to do this work. I happen to be connected with a factory that has had to engage not only a meat inspector but a veterinary inspector as well. We have had to pay the salaries of these officials out of our own pockets. The other people have paid nothing.
Under this Bill the State is now proposing to provide a cheap system of veterinary inspection. I think that these people ought to pay some little thing for that service. It is the cheapest kind of inspection that they can possibly have. As the State is now proposing to provide that, those concerned in these small-sized factories ought to have no objection to the proposal in the Bill. Everyone must pay, and there can be no discrimination between one set of people and another. It is well known that there are a lot of people who, without any capital, go out and  kill pork when there is a market for it, but who drop off after a couple of weeks or months, when there is a fall in prices. I think these people ought not to be taken into consideration as much as has been suggested by some Deputies. They are now going to get cheap inspection that they had not before. The lack of that inspection in the past meant that carcases were being sent to England and Scotland in the most extraordinary condition. I have seen Irish carcases at Birkenhead that were a disgrace to the country, and to whomsoever sent them out.
Mr. Corry: I am afraid Deputy Gorey is talking of areas that he has not much knowledge of. I think he should have informed himself about the conditions in those areas before speaking as he has done. I know that in Cork we have very competent meat inspectors. They inspect practically every carcase before it leaves Cork.
Mr. Corry: The Deputy's case is that the big firms exporting regularly and in large quantities should be continued to the detriment of the small man. The small man will have to pay his £75 as well as the large exporter. I am afraid that in Deputy Gorey's statement we find some of the advice on which the Minister acted when he fixed the original fee for the three classes at  £225. On the Second Reading of this Bill I alluded to the fact that the small exporter was going to be crushed out. The Minister said that he did not know that that would be much harm.
Mr. Corry: Yes, but I still hold that a fee of £75 is far too high. If we want to have competition in the trade, then we must see to it that the small man is allowed to carry on. You are not going to have that competition if you allow the dead meat trade in this country to fall into the hands of three or four large firms, who, of course, will ultimately form a ring and pay what they like. That is what it amounts to. I consider that the fee of £75 is still too high. I think that the figure suggested in Deputy Ryan's amendment would be quite enough.
Mr. Bennett: Notwithstanding the very clear explanation that has been given by the Minister of the amendments that I have tabled, I am afraid there are still some Deputies who have not yet grasped the meaning of them. Certainly the last Deputy who has spoken does not appear to have grasped their meaning. As I have indicated in my amendments, there will be no single fee of £75. As regards the three classes of meat exported there will be a fee of £50 for beef, a fee of £50 for pork and a fee of £25 for mutton. I hope that is clear. The object that I and the Deputies associated with me—Deputies Dwyer and Wolfe— had in putting down these amendments was that we felt that the original sums specified in the Bill were too high and that a reduction ought to be made.
We felt, further, that it was necessary to safeguard in some way the small exporters, upon a certain number of whom the Bill will necessarily be hard. Perhaps it will follow from a Bill of this kind that some of the small exporters will ultimately disappear because of various circumstances. In some instances there is  insufficient accommodation, and the premises are not suitable for proper packing and inspection, as was pointed out in the course of the Second Reading debate. Taking these things into consideration, a good many of us felt that there should be a safeguard for the very small exporters. A man who may be exporting, say, only a few porkers or a few lambs per week would, under the Bill as it originally stood, have to pay a fee of £75. Our amendments, if accepted, would reduce the fees. A man who exported beef, mutton and pork would, according to the Bill as introduced, have to pay a fee of £225. If our amendments are accepted that would be very considerably modified. The exporter who exports pork will pay a fee of £50. If he exports a few sheep as well he will pay only £75, and not two fees of £50 each. The object of the amendments is to secure as far as possible that the small exporters would be saved from extinction. Of course, the amendments might be modified or extended at a future stage.
Mr. Corkery: I am chiefly interested in the small exporters, as I know a good many of them in the trade. They deal principally in beef and veal, and they give a good deal of employment. I know five of them in one town and their total killings would not amount to very much, and would not, in my opinion, be sufficient to enable them to pay a fee of £50 for a licence even if they all combined. There are three factories, or slaughter-houses, killing for those five. They are doing a nice trade and making a living out of it, and giving a good deal of employment, but they are making no big profits. If they are compelled to pay £50 they will either have to send their cattle to one of the larger factories to be killed or they will be driven out of business altogether. The small people who are engaged in the trade were prevented by different regulations from shipping cattle alive, and now they are to be driven out of the business altogether. I think the licence should be reduced  considerably for people, say, killing less than 1,000.
Mr. O'Hanlon: I am not interested in the large or the small exporter, but I am interested in the exports from the country, with which this Bill is supposed to deal. I have down some amendments and they more or less dove-tail into one another. In one amendment, I propose that the fee be £12 10s. According to Section 23, the Minister may refuse a licence if 3,000 have not been exported in twelve months. I propose that the number should be reduced to 1,000, and at 3d. per head that would give yield of £12 10s. I propose that as the minimum. The sections in this Bill are watertight, and I would perfer that the amendments which have been tabled should stand and not be discussed until the Minister has produced amendments which he suggests, and then the whole matter could be discussed. I have certain views in the matter, but at present we are more or less beating the air in discussing the amendments as we have not before us the amendments which the Minister will bring forward at a later stage. We have passed the Financial Resolution authorising the Minister for Finance to make arrangements to meet the costs of putting this Bill into operation. I am not concerned with that.
In his Second Reading speech the Minister stated that the licence fees at £75 would yield £19,000. He has since made a suggestion which would have the effect of reducing the yield by more than one half. I do not care whether the Bill will cost £19,000, £20,000 or £30,000. The  trade in pork alone to this country, if developed, should be worth £5,000,000. In his Second Reading speech the Minister admitted that the Bill was intended principally to deal with pork, and he pointed out that the dead meat trade in cattle was gone since the Drogheda factory ceased working.
Mr. O'Hanlon: I am not speaking of that. The Bill is intended to deal principally with the pork trade. That trade starts about the beginning of October and winds up about April. The fee originally fixed was £75 for a pork licence, and one would have to export 6,000 carcases, not in 52 weeks but in about 20 weeks. Now that number has been reduced to 1,000, which is a very considerable reduction. A good deal has been said about wiping out the small traders. I know a small society of farmers that exported last year 500, and the year before 500, and their total turnover was £4,000. Out of 1,000 killings there were only three rejected as being unsound. At the same time three are too many, and the Bill is to provide even against that number slipping through. As the trade was conducted, in the small factories there was no veterinary inspection. I will not move any amendment until I hear what the Minister has to offer.
Mr. Aiken: We are glad that the Minister has accepted the amendment put down by Deputy Dwyer and Deputy Wolfe, but I think, if he considers matters further and gets in touch with those and other Deputies, he may see his way to accept the amendment of Deputy Dr. Ryan on Report. There is no one in any party here who stands for having badly packed meat sent out of the country. We all want to have the meat packed here and not to have it sent off driven on its four legs. It was with that view that Deputy Dr. Ryan moved his amendment reducing the fee. We want inspection, but we believe, as this trade is so  important to the country as a whole, that whatever inspection is necessary should be provided at the expense of the State. The President to-day talked a lot about what has been done to relieve unemployment. If we were to kill in this country all the cattle that are driven off, it would provide very much more employment than has been so far provided during the last seven or eight years by the Government by means of tariffs or the Shannon scheme. We should do nothing to discourage people who want to start meat packing companies or societies in different towns and villages. If the Minister and those in his Party who wish him to reduce the fee get together and discuss the whole matter they may agree to Deputy Dr. Ryan's amendment on the Report Stage.
Mr. Haslett: I suppose I will run the risk, like most of the previous speakers, of getting lost in this subject before I finish what I have to say. I think that in discussing this matter we are missing the point. Deputy O'Hanlon touched on it lightly, namely, how the money will be raised if it is taken at so much per head. The fee of £75 or £50 is not absolutely necessary if the export is greater than 4,000 pigs. If it is greater than 4,000 it will work out higher. I think that there is something to be said for having a lower fee than £50, say as has been mentioned, £25, which would work out at a minimum of 2,000 pigs. I take it that after that, threepence a head would still increase the amount. I do not think that any Deputy has made the point that a per-head rate is not a proper one to charge. We all recognise that but, in spite of Deputy Gorey's sentiments about big exporters, I think that the small exporter should be considered and should be allowed to get a start by a little accommodation. The season is short as it begins in October and ends, perhaps, a little earlier than April and it would be a big help to the country if you brought down the minimum on which such a man must  pay to 2,000 or 2,500 pigs. That would be for the best interests of the trade and it would not give an insignificant sum. We must remember that if we can hold this trade, which we expect we can do, with inspection it will improve. All you have to do, so far as I have seen, with producers is to show them that they have a paying market and they will rise to the occasion. I make the plea that if the fee cannot be reduced to £25 it should be kept to £30 so that we will get in line in all districts in the country, not only the big exporters, who will have our blessing, but also the small exporters. I therefore support the suggestion to have the fee reduced from £50 to £30.
Mr. Hogan: I would like Deputy O'Hanlon and other Deputies to understand that I am not concerned with the big or the small exporter, but with having the meat exported in a proper condition from the country. I admit that the small exporter may be efficient, but it is more difficult for him to be efficient than for the big exporter, who has a big turnover and bigger plant. There is too much sympathy with the small man in this country, but there is little room for him in this matter. We are not so poor, not so lacking in organisation, that we must depend on small, ill-equipped factories. Even if most of our farmers are small and not very wealthy, it only requires organisation to see that our factories are a reasonable size and properly equipped. I dislike the general point of view that we are such a poor country and so lacking in organisation we must continue to do business in a small footling way. We will never get anywhere on those lines. Deputy Moore read some letters from English importers in connection with the trade which they did with an Irish exporter. I do not know the exporter referred to. He may be the most efficient man in the world. The Deputy, of course, did not, and need not, give names, but I do not pay too much attention to letters of that sort. I am not now referring to this specific case, but I am speaking generally  when I say that letters of that sort do not convey much to me. I have hardly ever known a case where an egg exporter lost his licence and was not able to get letters from English importers saying that they had done business with him for years and that he was a satisfactory man. I am not speaking now, as I say, of Deputy Moore's case or of the exporter in question, but I would not pay too much attention to that. In my view there is a limit in smallness beyond which we cannot go and have efficiency. The real fee which we should consider is not the minimum fee, but the fee to be charged per head. We are charging 1/- for cattle. There is, as Deputy Gorey pointed out, an old-cow trade, and the sooner it is killed the better. If that fee kills it because it would not be worth 1/- a cow, so much the better.
Mr. Hogan: Where, however, there is a genuine beef trade a fee of 1/- is not too much. There will be, perhaps, disadvantages, but there ought to be distinct advantages from the point of view of exporters, and it ought to lead to an enhanced reputation for Irish fresh meat. If so, it will be worth a fee of 1/- per head. The same remark applies to pork. For the same reason, a fee of threepence per head does not appear to be too much. I have the fees charged in Holland, which was our real competitor before. Holland charges 1/6d. for cattle, 3d. for calves immediately after birth, and 5.4d. for pigs and sheep. In Denmark the fee was 3d. in 1928, 3.3d. in 1927, 3.9d. in 1926, and 3.9d. in 1925. In practically all cases the fees were dearer than ours. The Danish and Dutch farmers obviously considered that those fees were good value. I suggest, if the general provisions of this Bill are passed, that the farmers will be getting as good value as those in other countries. I have undoubtedly made big concessions in regard to fees. I have met the exporters about whom Deputy Corry speaks. I realise that it is their business to  expect more, and that it is not their business to say anything to me which would give the impression that they would be thankful if we went further, but they did not put on the poor mouth which has been put on now on their behalf. I met nine or ten representatives from Cork, representing a great many small businesses, and they were quite reasonable. They said that undoubtedly there were small businesses which would have to go. While they did not agree to the fees which I suggested, they agreed to the general principle that there should be graduated scales. My impression was that they came to the conclusion that I was meeting them fairly. I do not say that I am repeating what they actually said.
Mr. Hogan: I could not tell you that. The question of a minimum fee would not arise in Denmark or in Holland, because they do not believe in doing business in the way we do it. They have no patience with what you call the small man in business. They give him as good a chance as anybody else, but he is not such a fool as to go into a big trade. They realise that a man cannot run into a trade for a fortnight, then drop it and run into another trade. Without having any detailed knowledge at the moment, I do not believe that the question is of any importance in Denmark, even though it is a country of small farmers, or that it is of any importance in Holland, because the farmers there are well organised and they will not go into a small trade. They will do a little organisation before they start factories, and when they start factories they are able to equip them properly and to make proper arrangements for the transport of their produce.
Mr. Hogan: I am not out to crush the small farmer either, but I am out to see that nobody, big or small, good or bad, exports bad meat to England or elsewhere if we can stop it, and in doing that, if big men or small men have to suffer it is their look-out. On the question of reducing the minimum fees, if a man holds more than one exporter's licence he will not pay more than £75 as a fee. If he holds only one exporter's licence he will not pay more than £50. If he has a mutton licence his maximum fee is £25. That is a big concession, I suggest, as it stands.
Deputy Aiken and other Deputies suggested that it might be made lower. I think I will have to fight on that line. Further, I will put in my amendments and, as the Ceann Comhairle suggested, I think the next stage of this Bill should be deferred until this day fortnight. I will undertake to have my amendments handed in by this day week. They will then be before Deputies for a full week and they will have plenty of time to make up their minds on them and on what amendments they are to put in. I do not think there is any use in saying anything further at this stage.
Dr. Ryan: I want to make it plain that I intended to vote against Section 12. I now presume that Section 12, as amended, will be put if this amendment is adopted, and we are only agreeing to it in the hope of defeating it on the next stage. The Minister mentioned Holland and Denmark, but there is one difference between Holland and Denmark and this country. In Holland and Denmark the meat exporters have not to compete with the live stock exporters as they have to compete in this country. Practically no live cattle or pigs come out of Denmark or Holland to England, so that the people in the dead meat trade are in competition only with one another and not with live stock exporters.  This Bill is going to benefit the exporters of dead meat by getting a better price for the meat in the English markets, but the question of holding that trade is another matter, because Holland and Denmark were not able to keep their trade, and had to get out when the British told them.
Mr. Cole: The Minister said that a man should not rush from one trade into another. We have the pork business, which comes to an end in April or May. Then the lamb trade commences, so that a man exporting pork could quite easily turn his hand to the lamb trade.
Mr. Cole: In my part of the country we suffer greatly from “rings” in the dead pork trade. You have half a dozen or so of men who make the price, and they do not consider the farmers at all. The farmers have no say in the matter. If we are going to strengthen these rings, as this Bill will——
Mr. Cole: Because only a certain number of people can buy 120 pigs per week. There are only twenty weeks of the dead pork trade, and in order to get the minimum fee you have to get 200 pigs per week. In certain parts of the county it would be impossible almost to do that, except in one or two cases. In the county town of Cavan I understand it would be impossible for more than one man to get that amount, and very frequently even that man would not get it. This Bill is creating a monopoly or ring for one or two men, probably one man, in the district.
(1) The Minister may at any time alter or revoke an exporter's licence upon the application of the holder of such licence or, in the case of an individual, the personal representative or, in the case of an incorporated body, the liquidator of the holder of such licence.
(2) The Minister may at any time, without any such application, revoke an exporter's licence if he is satisfied—
(a) that such licence was procured by fraud or by misrepresentation whether fraudulent or innocent; or
(b) that the premises in respect of which such licence was granted—
(i) have, in case such licence is a beef exporter's licence, ceased to be registered in the register of cattle slaughtering premises; or
(ii) have, in case such licence is a pork exporter's licence, ceased to be registered in the register of pig slaughtering premises; or
(iii) have, in case such licence  is a mutton exporter's licence, ceased to be registered in the register of sheep slaughtering premises; or
(iv) have, in case such licence is a horse-flesh exporter's licence, ceased to be registered in the register of horse slaughtering premises; or
(v) have, in case such licence is a goat-flesh exporter's licence, ceased to be registered in the register of goat slaughtering premises; or
licence was the registered licensee of the premises in respect of of the premises in respect of which such licence was granted and has ceased to be such registered licensee;
(d) that the holder of such licence, if an individual, has died or, if an incorporated body, has been dissolved and that such licence has not been transferred by the Minister under this Act to another person within three months after such death or dissolution; or
(e) that the holder of such licence has been adjudicated a bankrupt; or
(f) that in the opinion of the Minister there has been any contravention (whether by way of commission or omission) of this Act or any regulations made thereunder by the holder of such licence.
(3) Before revoking (otherwise than in accordance with an application in that behalf made under this section) an exporter's licence, the Minister shall give at least one fortnight's notice in writing of his intention so to revoke such licence to the holder thereof, and shall consider any representations made before the expiration of such notice by such holder, and may if he thinks fit cause an inquiry to be held in relation to the matter.
(4) A notice of the Minister's intention to revoke or alter an exporter's licence may be served by delivering it to the person to  whom it is addressed or by leaving it with a person over sixteen years of age on the registered premises in respect of which it was granted or by sending it by post to the person to whom it is addressed at his last known place of abode.
(5) Where an exporter's licence has been revoked by the Minister under this section, the Minister may at any time thereafter refuse to grant an exporter's licence to the person who was the holder of such first-mentioned licence immediately before the revocation thereof.
Dr. Ryan: I move:—
To delete sub-section (2) (a).
Under this section the Minister takes power to revoke an exporter's licence if it is proved that such licence was secured by fraud or misrepresentation, whether fraudulent or innocent. I have put forward this amendment because I believe that the Minister should not be the judge of whether a man committed an act either fraudulently or through misrepresentation. I think the person who is accused of that should have at least an opportunity of hearing the evidence against him in open court or somewhere else. He should have an opportunity of hearing what are the charges and the full evidence to substantiate those charges which come before the Minister. The Minister may have some reason for putting in this clause which I am not aware of and I am open to conviction on that point.
Mr. Hogan: I quite agree with Deputy Ryan that this particular sub-section (2) (a) raises an entirely different issue from paragraph (b). If a man is accused of fraud he should have an opportunity of clearing himself before a judicial body. Take the case of a man who applied to be registered as the owner of slaughtering premises and was so registered, and it was brought to the Minister's notice afterwards that he was not the owner but his brother and you had a dispute between them. Now, supposing  that clause was not in the Bill what could I do? I could do nothing unless I strained some other clause in the Bill, closed my eyes and held that the premises were not properly equipped, that the regulations were not obeyed and said to the holder of the exporter's licence, “you must leave these premises because they are not clean.” That is not the way to do business. This man had acquired by a trick a vested interest as against his brother. What would I have to do under the circumstances? I would have to say to the man that I was informed that there was a case made that he was not the owner of the premises and that he would have to establish his title in court; give him a reasonable time to establish his title in court. If he did that he was all right and if he failed to do that the registration was cancelled. That would be the procedure. I think that meets the Deputy's point because I would not be the judge as to whether or not the licence was obtained by fraud.
Dr. Ryan: I was not clear on it because under the previous section I thought the person could not be registered unless he could prove ownership of the premises or say that he had a lease from the owner.
Mr. Hogan: Yes. So-and-so applies formally to the Department and says: “I am the owner of certain premises”; the Department does not inquire into the title. The Department accepts his word. It appears afterwards that there is a dispute as between his brother and himself. The Department cannot go into the dispute. When the application is made you know that possibly it may be fraudulent; it may be intentionally or unintentionally fraudulent. He may have a good title, but he must prove his title in court.
Dr. Ryan: If that is the procedure to be followed, I am satisfied.
Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
Mr. Hogan: Amendment 9 which I am proposing reads:
 In sub-section (3), page 10, line 43, to insert after the word “thereof” the words “or his personal representative (if any) or its liquidator (as the case may be),” and in line 44 to insert after the word “holder” the words “or personal representative or liquidator (as the case may be).”
This is an obvious amendment; it is a drafting amendment.
Amendment put and agreed to.
Dr. Ryan: I move amendment 10:
In sub-section (4), line 50, before the word “post” to insert the word “registered.”
Mr. Hogan: I am accepting this amendment.
Amendment agreed to.
Question—“That Section 15 (as amended) and Section 16 stand part of the Bill”—put and agreed to.
Mr. O'Hanlon: I beg to move amendment 11.
After sub-section (4) to add two new sub-sections as follows:—
“(5) It shall be the duty of every registered proprietor of every registered slaughtering premises to keep or cause to be kept in such premises records showing the price paid for each live pig purchased, the dead weight of each pig after preparation for export, and the price received for each pig from the consignee and such additional particulars as the Minister may require and all such records may be inspected at any time during office hours by an inspector or person or persons from whom pigs were purchased for export by such registered proprietor.
(6) It shall be the duty of every licensed exporter who is not the registered proprietor of the premises in respect of which he is so licensed to keep or cause to be kept in such premises records  showing the price paid for each live pig purchased, the dead weight of each pig after preparation for export, and the price received for each pig from the consignee and such additional particulars as the Minister may require and all such records may be inspected at any time during office hours by an inspector, or person or persons from whom pigs were purchased for export by such licensed exporter.”
I think the object of these two sub-sections is very clear. Getting back to the question that we are dealing with, the matter of fees, in my opinion the higher the fee that is put on the exporter the more restricted will be the number of slaughter houses and none but the large men will survive. I do not say a word against that. The effect of this Bill will be that the export trade will be in the hands of about thirty men instead of 160. This Bill, therefore, creates a monopoly in this country, for you will have confined the business to about 30 large exporters. For what? To export Irish produce to a country which is sheltering that particular trade at the moment. There is a monopoly in Ireland, and there is a sheltered trade at the other side. In other words, there is no competition at the other side. All through this Bill there is not a word in regard to the producer, and there is nothing in this Bill to control the profits which these privileged exporters may extract from the producer.
The object of my amendment is to enable any person who supplies pigs to these licensed exporters to come into their premises and ascertain the price received for the pig. I do not mean to say that the exporter is not entitled to his legitimate profit. This enables the Government Inspectors to go in and find whether the exporter is extracting too much profit from the producer. I think that is most important, because if this Bill is not going to bring in money to the producer it fails. The Bill is not going to bring any money to the small people. The Minister said  there were too many small people in this country—too many people doing business in a small way. With that I agree. But here we are dealing with a trade in which the small farmer and the labourer are the principal producers of the products we are dealing with. We must protect these people. I do not believe, if this amendment is accepted, that the small man who sells his pigs to the large exporter is going to worry him or to be a nuisance to the factory, but I do think that it is the proper thing for the Government when they are giving a monopoly to these exporters to put the producer in the position of knowing what profit the exporter made on his pig. Supposing that by this Bill we increase our exports by, say, £1,000,000. If the trade is worked properly we should increase it by that much. The increase should be enormous. Let us take it that it is £1,000,000. If this Bill passes in its present form no one knows into whose pocket that £1,000,000 is going to go. The sum of £1,000,000 divided amongst the small farmers would be an enormous benefit to the country, but if it goes into the pockets of the exporters I do not believe it will be any financial benefit to the country at all. For that reason I think it is important that these records should be kept. The Minister has specified the number of records to be kept, and he leaves it open to himself to extend that in any way——
Mr. Hogan: Oh, no.
Mr. O'Hanlon: He has practically unlimited powers. The Minister will find, that if he reads sub-sections (1), (2), (3) and (4) of Section 17, and also the penalty sections. The Minister will find there that he has wide scope in insisting on the keeping of records. An additional record of the price got for a pig, with the weight of the pig and the price paid, would not be a matter of great inconvenience to the exporter. I know there will be a considerable amount of excitement as to how this record should be kept. A number of people  will say it would be quite impossible to keep it. Take the man who sells a tubercular pig for export and it is condemned by the veterinary inspector. That man will be able to tell from whom he bought that pig, even though he bought 40 pigs in the same place, and he will be able to tell the value of the pig. If that is found possible, there is no reason why regulations should not be brought in by the Minister by which each pig would have an identification mark. That would be a proper regulation, because if it were found that a pig was tubercular, and that that pig came from a particular place in the country where tuberculosis is rampant, it would be necessary for the Minister's Department to come down there to the producer and see where the tuberculosis is. There should be no trouble about that. If we can find where tubercular pigs are, and keep records, we should just as easily be able to keep records of what the exporter has got for his pigs.
I am not for one moment suggesting that the exporters are not going to play the game; but as a safeguard for the producers and in the interests of the dead meat trade I think it is important that some such provision should be made and some record should be kept. I can visualise a state of affairs, if this Bill becomes law in its present state, in which after twelve months, there will be a falling-off in the quantity of dead pork exported and there will be a want of confidence in the exporters on the part of the producers. We will be then in the position when the exporter will not know the value of the animal that he is selling. I believe that the large exporters are going to benefit under this Bill. The large exporters will not be worried about £100 or £150. It is the large exporters who are perfectly safeguarded here, and they will get their fees out of the producers. In my opinion, the Government should put a purely nominal fee on the exporter, and I have put down a figure of £12 10s. as such a fee. The  exporters should also be placed under control so that the producers will be treated fairly. If large fees have to be paid, the exporters have a ready excuse. They will tell the producers: “I have to pay the Government all this money,” and the result is that the price of pork comes down. I ask farmer Deputies who are pig raisers to support this amendment and to insist that the Minister will accept the principle of it. That would enable the producer of the pork to get fair play. The effect of this Bill is to establish a monopoly and it will permit a certain number of exporters to deal with a sheltered trade.
Mr. J.X. Murphy: It is said that fools enter in where angels fear to tread, and I am afraid that in this instance I am doing the foolish thing, because I do not know very much about the pig trade. I believe, however, that there is a case made for an inspector having access to the books, but I think it would be an impossible thing to allow the books to be inspected by everybody.
Dr. Ryan: I think it is very unfair for Deputy O'Hanlon to expect the factories, most of which are in a struggling position, to do what no other traders in this country are expected to do, and that is to keep a record of what has been paid for certain articles, and then, after all the operations of the trade have been completed, to be obliged to inform a person what was obtained for a particular pig. Naturally, the person who sold the pig would be dissatisfied, because he would not understand fully the various divisions of the trade. It is quite obvious to anybody reading the balance-sheets of any of the co-operative bacon factories that they are not making any great profit. I think we ought not to put any further barriers in the way by making people dissatisfied with what they are getting. Deputy O'Hanlon said he was putting forward this amendment because the whole trade was going to be left to a ring of thirty large exporters.
Mr. O'Hanlon: I did not mention the word “ring.”
Dr. Ryan: The Deputy said thirty large exporters. We hope before the Bill goes through that we will have more than thirty exporters, and that we will be able to bring the fees down, and so enable more people to deal with exports and not have all the work of exportation left in the hands of big men. Deputy O'Hanlon advocated the reduction of the fee to £12 10s., but there is nothing of that nature in his amendment. The Deputy has made no reference at all to the minimum figure of £75.
Mr. Corry: I am in favour of this amendment. I think it is time that we made a start. I suggest to the Minister that in addition to those regulations he should also provide a special force of the Civic Guard— perhaps he would bring in the C.I.D. —for the purpose of protecting the exporters as soon as the producers find out they are being fleeced. I am afraid from the way this Bill is working out that Deputy O'Hanlon's estimate is correct. This Bill is going to place the dead meat industry in the hands of a ring. I believe that ring will fix their prices and they will start out to rob the people. It will mean the killing of the fresh meat trade.
Mr. Gorey: The arguments of Deputy O'Hanlon and Deputy Corry are on different lines. I take it Deputy O'Hanlon is representing the killers of pork, and I have no doubt that Deputy Corry represents the old cow industry.
Mr. Corry: Question!
Mr. Gorey: I am afraid that the two do not hang together.
Mr. Corry: On a point of explanation, I am afraid that Deputy Gorey's interest in the old cow is largely centred on the kennel.
Mr. Gorey: We have had a clear indication of what it all means from the Deputy from Cork. He points out that there is a class of cattle that  cannot be shipped from the country for obvious reasons. He mentioned that there were five traders in a small town engaged in that particular trade and they were all in deadly competition. I need only repeat what the Deputy said; it is scarcely necessary to add any further remarks to it. Deputy O'Hanlon, who has a knowledge of office work, surely realises the extra labour that would be entailed by this proposal of his. It would mean keeping records of the dead weight of the pig, the price paid for the pig, and many other particulars. Why, it would necessitate the employment of a special staff. What would the charge be in the circumstances on the industry that we all seem so anxious about? From whom would the money ultimately come? What about the producer in that case? I have some knowledge of an office, and without going into half the details that the Deputy suggests are necessary, I know it would require the employment of a pretty big staff. We must realise that the pigs will not be sold individually, but will come in batches of twenty and thirty from each producer. This proposition will not work out as a business matter.
Mr. O'Hanlon: It is working out at the moment in certain factories.
Mr. Gorey: One must consider, too, the great annoyance that would be caused by people demanding this information. To my mind it is one of the most impractical suggestions that has been made in connection with this Bill.
Mr. Moore: Hear, hear!
Mr. Gorey: I have no doubt as to who will pay the cost of the increased staff. The producer will, of course. Trade is going to remain in the hands of thirty individuals. If there is any profit in this trade, we will have such competition as we have in the case of the old cow trade, where five in a small town are competing closely.
The profits of these cannot be kept  secret any more than the profits of anything else. If there are any profits we will have plenty of competition, and it is a joke to assume that the trade can be done without the secrets of the trade leaking out. It is not like Guinness's brewery, because we cannot be a second Guinness's brewery. It is a thing that everybody can do, and if there is a profit in it everyone will be after it. I suggest that the Deputy should withdraw the amendment.
Mr. O'Hanlon: Deputy Gorey has stated that this is impossible. This thing has been done in many societies. I have seen returns myself where pigs were absolutely identified. The prices were sent from London to societies, the pigs were identified to the producers and the prices paid for them were shown. There is nothing extraordinary in the keeping of the records. The whole question is as to whether the House is inclined to help the producer or to shelter the exporter.
Mr. Hogan: Even if it could be done the question is, should it be done? Sub-section (2) of Section 17 states:
It shall be the duty of every licensed exporter who is not the registered proprietor of the premises in respect of which he is so licensed to keep or cause to be kept in such premises such records as the Minister may, in each individual case, consider satisfactory of all consignments of fresh meat and offals exported by him or by any other person on his behalf from those premises, and within twelve hours after the despatch of any such consignment to enter or cause to be entered in such records such particulars as the Minister may require of the fresh meat and offals comprised therein and the name and address of the person to whom and the route by which the same was consigned.
In other words, a register must be kept of the number of carcases in the consignment, the weight of the consignment and the person to whom it was sent. That is all they have to  keep, and that is all I can ask them to keep under the Bill. I have no doubt that if I attempted to ask the factory to keep the sort of records Deputy O'Hanlon suggests they should keep I would succeed, but I could not enforce such a right. This Bill is to improve the general standard of fresh meat. Deputy O'Hanlon's suggestion is that records should be kept showing the price paid for each pig by the factory owner and the price at which he sells the resultant product; in other words, the keeping of a register which would show the profits by a very simple calculation—the general profit of the concern and the profit made in respect of every single consignment.
Mr. O'Hanlon: It would show only the gross profit. It is not a question of the net profit.
Mr. Hogan: It would be quite easy to get the net profit when you were dealing with pork. After all, there would be no doubt about getting the information which would give you the net profit. The Deputy would admit that this is almost a revolutionary proposal and that it is a proposal that should be considered on its merits. Now, this Bill is in no way concerned with the profits made by the exporters or by the farmers, this Bill is concerned to improve the quality of exported fresh meat. The reason why we are endeavouring to improve the quality of exported fresh meat is that we hope there will be a bigger demand for the meat, that if there is a bigger demand for it, there will be a bigger price for it, and if there is a bigger price it will be shared in by everybody from the farmer up. We hope that. But the object of the Bill is to improve the quality of fresh meat. The Deputy has suggested really a totally different Bill—a Bill to control the prices, to regulate the profits and to establish the relation between the wholesale price, the retail price and the price to the farmer, to establish the relation between the profits the farmers would make and the profits the factory would make.
 That is the sort of Bill to which the Deputy's amendment would be relevant. How, therefore, can we consider it in relation to this Bill? It is a revolutionary proposal. It would be the only trade in the country where not one, but hundreds of vets.—certainly fifty or sixty vets. and examiners and all that class of people—could walk in and find out the private details of the business of the firm, details which these firms hide from everybody else and which they hide from their competitors. There is only one body in the country at present which can insist on getting private details of that sort, the Revenue Commissioners—and their powers are fairly limited—for the purpose of collecting income tax. Of course they are pledged to secrecy, and all sorts of precautions are taken which are effectual for preventing the secrets getting out. But here is a case—one case and one case only—where it is proposed to give a right to 50 or 60 people to go in and examine these firms' books and to get information which they show to nobody but their directors, information which would be valuable to their competitors. It is really a revolutionary proposal and a proposal to which there would undoubtedly be, rightly or wrongly, tremendous opposition. Therefore it is a proposal which should be put up by itself and on its merits and not introduced as a sort of side-wind to a Bill dealing with something else. This Bill deals with the export of fresh meat with a view to improving it, a totally different matter.
Mr. O'Hanlon: Are the Minister and the Department not aware that this actual system is in operation?
Mr. Hogan: Where?
Mr. O'Hanlon: In the case of those co-operative societies which are shipping meat, and it is not revolutionary. You are going to take trade from those societies and hand it over to someone else.
Mr. Hogan: There is not a properly run bacon factory in the  country which does not keep accounts to show the profits they make from every consignment they send out, and any factory that does not do that should be and would be in bankruptey. But it is another thing to keep records for the inspection of 50, 60, 70 or 80 inspectors for the purpose of enabling the Minister to take action on the facts and figures which these inspectors would get. For instance, supposing it were found that, as a result of an examination of the prices which a factory owner paid for a consignment of pigs and an examination of the price which he got for the finished article produced from the consignment, the Minister came to the conclusion that 20 per cent. was made on the consignment, what steps should he take? Should he say: “You should give a bigger price to the farmer and you should be content with less than 20 per cent”? There may be a case for State Socialism of that sort, but it is a huge issue which should not be argued on a Bill like this.
Mr. O'Hanlon: There is nothing in my amendment about taking action.
Mr. Hogan: What is the use of doing something which will cause intense opposition? By the way, I want to note and to underline, for the benefit of Cork exporters, the fact that Deputy Corry is absolutely in favour of my getting powers—he has stated this here specifically, and he seems to be concerned with the small exporters of Cork. He has talked a great deal about them, and he says that he has their interest at heart. He says he represents them and that he wants to look after their interests. Now he is in favour of giving me, an irresponsible person like me, power to go into their factories, to examine their books, to find out exactly what they paid for each pig, to find out exactly what they got for all their pork, and to say, in fact, how much of that they should get, and how much they should hand over to the farmers. That is his  position—the man who is so concerned about keeping the exporters of Cork in business.
Mr. Corry: And not alone you, but the producer, who is, to my mind, a great deal more important than you, and I think that if the exporter had the knowledge that his books could be inspected by the producer he would not have the neck to nail 20 per cent. as profit.
Mr. Hogan: Anyway, it comes down to this: if you do not want this private information, which every business man rightly regards as a trade secret for the purpose of taking action what is the point of incurring all the further hostility? What is the point of incurring all the hostility by introducing such an amendment, because undoubtedly it will be opposed tooth and nail by every exporter, and there will be a revolution, particularly in Cork, where Deputy Corry comes from. He dare not go down to Cork if such a proposal were passed.
Mr. Corry: He will go further than you will.
Mr. Hogan: Moreover, there is this talk about monopolies. Imagine a small country like this having thirty—I do not say that there will be only thirty; I suggest there will be at least thirty—independent exporters of pork, and calling that a monopoly. It could not be called a monopoly. The trouble in this country is that there are not enough monopolies. All modern businesses are becoming monopolistic. You can take it as my view that the more monopolies we get in this country, provided they are properly controlled, the better.
Mr. Moore: We will use that against you some time.
Mr. Hogan: There are too many small businesses. Is not everything we are doing in connection with the creameries tending to a monopoly? Are we not trying to hand over the creameries to the farmers? Does  anyone suggest that we are not right in closing the small creameries and amalgamating them? There is no hope for business in this country except in the way of rationalisation and amalgamation. I will not argue about small businesses and the necessity for protecting the small man, because Deputies can take it that from my point of view, rightly or wrongly, the more amalgamation that takes place the better, and any influence I have has been in the direction of more and more amalgamation. I know country towns where there are four times too many small shops. Does it lead to competition and price-cutting? Not at all. It leads to prices going up. You can get more competition from four big firms which are doing their business efficiently than from four hundred small ones.
Mr. O'Hanlon: I am very glad that my amendment has got this expression from the Minister. He referred to creameries. Will the Minister tell me if the small suppliers are entitled to know the prices paid for butter in London?
Mr. Hogan: Of course, because it is their own.
Mr. O'Hanlon: I ask the same thing, and you say it is outrageous.
Mr. Hogan: The smallest supplier is a shareholder in the creamery and is entitled to know, but I am not entitled to go into your business and ask you what profits you make.
Mr. O'Hanlon: Call it anything you like. Are you not putting into the hands of people by this Bill the exclusive right to trade in this business?
Mr. Hogan: No.
Mr. O'Hanlon: Just the same as you gave the creameries the right to purchase.
Mr. Hogan: No, the right must be given to anybody who conforms to certain regulations.
Mr. O'Hanlon: Anyhow, there is nothing in this Bill to protect the  producer. You admit that it does not touch the producer, and you want more monopolies.
Mr. Hogan: No, it does not touch him, except indirectly.
Mr. Moore: Surely the Minister does not admit that the amendment is practicable? Even if it were not revolutionary from this side it would surely be revolutionary from the other side. Does anyone think that the importers in London are going to take such pains in selling a consignment of pork, lamb or mutton?
Mr. Hogan: That is not suggested.
Mr. Moore: It is.
Mr. Hogan: No, it is only suggested that the factory owner will say what price he gave for the pigs and what he received for them.
Mr. Moore: But if there are only 30 factories, assuredly a consignment would be so big that it would be altogether unreasonable to ask a London importer to identify each pig. There would probably be differences in quality in consignments.
Mr. O'Hanlon: They are doing that already.
Mr. Moore: I do not believe that it could be done.
Mr. Hogan: I venture to say that I could go into any of the pig factories and they could tell me what was paid for any consignment and what they received for it.
Mr. Moore: A consignment is one thing, but it might be made up of the produce of a dozen producers.
Mr. Hogan: If a consignment is made up of 30 pigs it would be easy to say what the price of one is. It could be done.
Mr. Gorey: There is a good deal of misapprehension about this. I represent a co-operative concern, and I would resent having to employ a staff to deal with the weight of every individual pig, the price received  for every pig, and the price paid for every pig. I would object to that. We do what no one else does in Ireland; we have proper identification marks on pigs. If an unhealthy pig gets through we are able to know him when we see him killed, and we are able to advise whoever sent him in within a day or two. If a pig which slips through our hands is sold in London we are able to put our hands on the person who supplied it. That is not done anywhere else. But I would resent having to employ a staff to get this information.
Mr. O'Hanlon: You can identify pigs and tell if they are tubercular, but you cannot tell the price of them! That is an extraordinary thing.
Division called for.
An Leas-Cheann Comhairle: How many Deputies ask for a division?
Deputies O'Hanlon, Corry and Little rose.
Amendment declared lost.
Ordered that Sections 17, 18 and 19 stand part of the Bill.
(6) Whenever an inspector, veterinary inspector or veterinary examiner or a duly authorised officer of the local sanitary authority reports under this section to the Minister that any registered slaughtering premises do not comply with the general conditions of cleanliness and suitability of slaughtering premises and the particular conditions of suitability of slaughtering premises applicable thereto or an inspector, veterinary inspector, or veterinary examiner reports under this section to the Minister that any registered crating premises do not comply with the general conditions of cleanliness and suitability of crating premises, the Minister may serve a  notice in the prescribed form upon the registered proprietor of such premises requiring such registered proprietor to do in the manner and time specified in such notice all or any of the things lawfully specified therein under this section.
Dr. Ryan: I move amendment 12:—
In sub-section (6), line 64, page 13, to delete the word “may” and substitute the word “shall.”
This section deals with the inspection of registered premises and the point is that if an inspector finds any irregularity or reason why the licence should be withdrawn in his opinion, if he reports the matter to the Minister as the section stands the Minister may serve a notice. I think that section should be worded in a stronger way. If there is any irregularity and if the inspector has proved it and so on the Minister should be compelled to serve the necessary notice. I think if the Act is going to be effective at all that action should be taken in all cases where any irregularity arises.
Mr. Hogan: An inspector, for instance, reports to the Minister that the general condition of cleanliness and the state of the premises are not what they should be. The Minister communicates with the factory owner and he denies it and says that the plant and equipment are perfect. The obvious thing to do is to send down another man. On re-inspection they find, for instance, that it is quite good enough. The Minister ought to have a discretion there. If the Deputy's amendment were carried I would have to act on every report that came on. An inspector may make an error in his report and we consider without going into all the circumstances that it is asking too much. It would make a particular veterinary inspector the Minister for the purposes of the Act.
Dr. Ryan: I would like to see every safeguard possible in the Act, that is to say, that the owner of the registered premises and so on would  have every possible safeguard and then having given them every possible safeguard give them no——
Mr. Hogan: There would always be the possible argument that the equipment was what it might be.
Amendment 12, by leave, withdrawn.
Dr. Ryan: I move amendment 13:—
In sub-section (8), line 38, page 14, before the word “post” to insert the word “registered.”
Amendment put and agreed to.
Ordered: That Section 20, as amended, stand part of the Bill.
Ordered: That Section 21 stand part of the Bill.
Mr. Hogan: I move amendment 14:—
At the end of the section to insert a new sub-section as follows:—
“(2) If any person acts in contravention of any regulations made under this section he shall be guilty of an offence under this section and be liable on summary conviction thereof to a fine not exceeding twenty pounds.”
That amendment is necessary. There was no penalty provided and there is no point in the section at all unless there is a penalty in it.
Dr. Ryan: That would be after notice.
Mr. Hogan: Of course.
Amendment put and agreed to.
Section 22, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.
(3) The Minister may, at any time, without any such application as aforesaid, cancel the registration of any premises under this Part of this Act if he is satisfied— (a) that the registration was procured by fraud or by misrepresentation whether fraudulent or innocent, or...
(c) in the case of registered pig slaughtering premises from which pork is exported, that in any period of twelve months commencing on any 1st day of July subsequent to the date on which registration of such premises was granted the volume of the export trade of pork exported from such premises has been less than 3,000 carcases of pigs, or
Amendment 15: To delete sub-section (3) (a), not moved.
Dr. Ryan: I move amendment 16:—
To delete sub-section (3) (e).
This is a particular sub-section on which there has been a good deal of discussion even up to the present time. It is a paragraph which deals with the minimum number of 3,000 porkers—that the Minister may refuse to renew the licence unless there are 3,000 porkers exported. It has also been suggested on another amendment that the number be reduced to 1,000, but I do not see very much use can be served by putting in even 1,000. I do not see why there should be any number at all mentioned. As we have already mentioned, in discussing previous amendments, the Minister has power to discontinue the licence if the premises are not suitable, if there is not proper cleanliness, and so on. If the licensee is a satisfactory person from every point of view except that his number is low, that is, for instance, if the amendment were carried for 1,000 and his number were only 990 and he was satisfactory in every way, I do not see why there should be a number mentioned at all. I mentioned before on the Second Reading that it is rather a dangerous thing to mention a number in some ways. The proprietors of a factory whose numbers were a little bit low towards the end of the year might feel compelled to go out and compete at an  uneconomic figure in order to make up their number for the year. In that way it would lead to a position we do not want, the position of driving some of the factories into liquidation by paying too much for their porkers. I would like to ask the Minister to accept this amendment and to cut out the number altogether.
Mr. Gorey: I would appeal to the Minister to consider this amendment. The volume of pork trade will depend on the price pork is fetching as against the price bacon is fetching. If it is more economic to fatten pigs up to the point of their being bacon pigs, it will lessen the supply to the pork industry. Therefore, there might be one year when there might be a considerable volume of fat pork there.
Mr. Hogan: Would you suggest ehanging the numbers?
Mr. Gorey: I agree with what Deputy Ryan says, that the numbers should be eliminated altogether. I do not think they serve any useful purpose.
Mr. Hogan: I complain of the point of view behind it. You are against amalgamations and I am in favour of amalgamations. I do not say it is the purpose of the Bill to bring about amalgamations. It is not and it should not be, but, in so far as it does that, is it any harm? Is it not all to the good? Deputy Ryan's point of view is that so far as it does it is harmful. If you accept the point of view that amalgamations are good, then you should be in favour of some number. What number do you suggest to make it reasonable?
Dr. Ryan: I am not against amalgamations, but you may have a district where it is not possible to have amalgamations.
Mr. Hogan: You have not. It will never be possible to get amalgamations if you make it easy for everyone to start in every little trade.
Dr. Ryan: I mentioned Wexford. Their number was slightly under 3,000 last year.
Mr. Hogan: Will you accept Deputy O'Hanlon's suggestion of 1,000? That is a big come-down.
Mr. Gorey: It does not affect me in the least, but there is a lot of competition in some districts, and in others there is not.
Mr. Hogan: A business that does not handle 1,000 is not doing well. We are not living in the mediaeval ages. We are living in modern times, when there are trains, motor cars and so on.
Mr. Gorey: There are businesses which do not handle 1,000.
Mr. Hogan: Look at how small that business is.
Mr. Moore: Is the Minister asking us to accept without modification the thesis that a big business is necessarily more efficient?
Mr. Hogan: I do not.
Mr. Moore: A lot of what he said to-day is correct as an explanation of what is happening in the world, but that that is necessarily an improvement on present day conditions has yet to be seen.
Mr. Hogan: Existing conditions in this country are not ideal so far as the pork trade is concerned.
Mr. Moore: So far as any trade is concerned they are not ideal, but are they going to be made more ideal by substituting soulless corporations for one-man businesses? There are still a fair number of people imbued with the desire to make a business of their own successful and who do not want other people interfering with their methods at all. They would much prefer that they would have the pride of creating a business and making it successful and they are not going to be influenced by the fact that amalgamation is the order of the day and that everything is going into the hands of big corporations. I think it should be left to another opportunity to discuss that matter,  but up to the present it is not at all clear that a business in which the proprietor can control the operations and see the work done has not yet a place in the world and cannot be made to compete fairly well with the bigger concerns.
Mr. Hogan: A footy little factory that would not be allowed to live in any other country in the world would kill 3,000 pigs. Deputy Ryan suggested doing away with the number. Deputy Gorey seems to agree with him, while Deputy O'Hanlon suggests reducing it to a thousand. I suggest a compromise, and let it be a thousand.
Dr. Ryan: Would I be free to move the amendment again?
Mr. Hogan: We ought to settle some point now. Otherwise we will be for ever on this Bill.
Dr. Ryan: It is unlikely that I will bring it up again but I may be asked to move it again.
Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
Mr. O'Hanlon: I move amendment 17:—
In sub-section (3) (e), line 51, to delete the figures “3,000” and substitute therefor the figures “1,000”.
Amendment agreed to.
Mr. Hogan: I move amendment 18:—
In sub-section (4), page 15, line 61, to delete the word “end” and substitute the words “of such premises of his personal representative (if any) or its liquidator (as the case may be) and also to the” and in line 63, after the word “or” to insert the words “or personal representative or liquidator (as the case may be) or by.”
Amendment agreed to.
Section 23, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.
The Minister may by order make  regulations (in this Act referred to as regulations for the preparation of fresh meat) in regard to all or any of the following matters:—
(a) the manner in which animals the meat of which is intended for export are to be assembled and penned for slaughter;
(b) the manner of slaughtering such animals;
(c) the times at which slaughter may take place;
(d) the manner of dressing, cleaning, hanging, cooling and weighing fresh meat and offals intended for export;
(e) the preservatives (if any) which may be used in fresh meat or offals intended for export.
The following amendment stóod in Dr. Ryan's name:—
To delete paragraph (c).
Dr. Ryan: Before moving this amendment I want to know whether the times at which slaughter may take place mean the time of the day or the time of the year.
Mr. Hogan: I think it is a power we would have to take, for this reason: It would be quite open to an exporter, even a big exporter, in order to make things utterly impossible for us, to say: “I am going to kill on Sunday,” or “I am going to kill any time.” If there was a dispute with a veterinary surgeon the exporter could say: “I will kill any time I like, even on a Sunday or at night.” It is merely to provide for a contingency like that that this is put in. There is no intention on our part to interfere with the discretion of the man carrying out his killings at any time he likes. But supposing an embittered quarrel took place, an exporter, out of pure cussedness, could say that he would kill on Sundays.
Dr. Ryan: If the Minister would accept amendment 27 I would withdraw this amendment.
Mr. Hogan: I will accept that.
 Amendment by leave, withdrawn.
Ordered: That Sections 24, 25 and 26 stand part of the Bill.
The Minister may by order make regulations (in this Act referred to as regulations for the packing of fresh meat) in regard to all or any of the following matters, that is to say:—
(a) the method and manner in all respects of packing fresh meat and offals, including the materials and packages to be used for such packing,
(b) the cleanliness and sterilisation of such materials and packages,
(c) the limit of weight of any one such package.
Dr. Ryan: I move amendment 20:—
To delete paragraph (c).
There are some of the exporters who feel a little bit uneasy about this particular paragraph. Perhaps some Deputies who are more conversant with the trade would be able to speak on the matter.
Mr. Hogan: I met those people and satisfied them. They thought that we were going to make arbitrary regulations. But in the case of exporters of eggs there was a case where the crates were so unwieldy that they were difficult to handle and had to be crushed into carriages, with the result that the eggs inside were broken. That happened to one exporter. He saw himself that it was absurd, and gave up that particular method of consigning eggs. We thought that possibly the same thing might occur with pork, and we are taking power to deal with it.
Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
Section 27 ordered to stand part of the Bill.
The Minister may by order  make regulations (in this Act referred to as regulations for the conveyance of fresh meat) in regard to all or any of the following matters, that is to say—
(a) the covering, means of conveyance and manner of handling fresh meat and offals during or at any stage of transit either from the registered premises to and including stowage on board ship for export, or from the registered premises to the placing in railway waggons or other conveyance for export on through bookings to Great Britain via ports in Northern Ireland.
(b) the structural suitability, ventilation and cleanliness of railway waggons and ships, and
(c) the manner and position for carriage in a railway waggon, ship, motor lorry, cart, or other vehicle used for the conveyance of fresh meat and offals for export.
Mr. Hogan: I move amendment 21:—
In paragraph (a), line 30, to delete the word “handling” and substitute the words “conveyance and handling of.”
It is purely a drafting amendment.
Amendment agreed to.
Mr. Hogan: I move amendment 22:—
To delete paragraph (b) and substitute the following paragraph:—
“(b) the suitability of internal fittings, ventilation and cleanliness of railway waggons and ships, and the protection of fresh meat and offals in such waggons and ships from contamination and deterioration.”
We do not think it is necessary to say to the railway companies. “You will have to build different types of waggons.” We think that cleanliness and the general suitability of internal fittings should be looked  after. The amendment leaves out the question of structural suitability.
Amendment agreed to.
Amendments 23 and 24 not moved.
Section 28, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.
(1) The Minister may from time to time appoint such and so many veterinary examiners (in this Act referred to as veterinary examiners) for the purposes of this Act as he may think necessary and the Minister for Finance shall sanction.
(2) Every veterinary examiner shall be a duly qualified veterinary surgeon.
(3) Every veterinary examiner shall hold office on such terms and on such conditions as the Minister shall direct, and shall receive such remuneration and allowances as the Minister, with the sanction of the Minister for Finance, shall appoint.
Mr. Hogan: I move amendment 25:—
In sub-section (3), line 51, to delete the words “as the Minister shall direct.”
Amendment agreed to.
Section 29, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.
(1) Whenever a veterinary examiner is unable owing to illness or absence to perform his duties as a veterinary examiner under this Act the Minister may appoint a duly qualified veterinary surgeon (in this Act referred to as a deputy veterinary examiner) to perform the duties of such veterinary examiner for such period as the Minister shall think fit.
(2) Every deputy veterinary examiner shall have all the powers and be subject to all the obligations  conferred and imposed on a veterinary examiner by this Act.
Mr. Hogan: I move amendment 26:—
In sub-section (1), line 56, to insert after the word “may” the words “with the sanction of the Minister for Finance.”
Amendment agreed to.
Section 30, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.
(1) The Minister shall allocate a veterinary examiner to every registered slaughtering premises but may allocate any particular veterinary examiner to two or more registered slaughtering premises.
(2) It shall be the duty of every veterinary examiner to attend at such times as the Minister shall appoint at every registered slaughtering premises to which he is allocated, and there examine in accordance with this Act and regulations made thereunder all animals there presented to him for examination.
Dr. Ryan: I move amendment 27:—
In sub-section (2), line 9, after the word “Minister,” to insert the words “after consultation with the licensee.”
Amendment agreed to.
Section 31, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.
Section 32 ordered to stand part of the Bill.
A veterinary examiner shall apply the mark prescribed by the regulations for the marking of fresh meat in the manner prescribed by the said regulations to the carcases and offals of every animal presented to him for examination by a licensed exporter at any registered slaughtering  premises or, if the offals only of such animals are intended to be exported, to such offals if, but only if, all the following conditions are complied with, namely,
(a) that such animal was examined by him in accordance with the veterinary examination regulations before slaughter and on being so examined was, having regard to such regulations, passed by him as fit for slaughter, and
(b) that such animal was slaughtered in his presence in accordance with the regulations for the preparation of fresh meat, and
Dr. Ryan: I move amendment 28:—
To delete paragraphs (a) and (b)
I believe that under this Bill a veterinary inspector will not be a whole-time officer as a rule. Therefore, it may happen that on occasions the persons slaughtering the animals may have to wait for the veterinary inspector to arrive.
Mr. Hogan: I will meet that at once by taking out the words “in his presence.”
Dr. Ryan: I am satisfied.
Mr. Hogan: I will introduce an amendment to that effect.
Amendment 28, by leave, withdrawn.
Section 33, 34, 35 and 36 ordered to stand part of the Bill.
(3) There shall be paid by the Minister to a local sanitary authority whose veterinary officer is a recognised veterinary officer by way of contribution towards the remuneration payable by such local sanitary authority to such officer such moneys as the Minister shall determine.
 The following amendments were agreed to.
In sub-section (3), line 56, to delete the words “a recognised” and substitute the words “an authorised.”—(Deputy Dwyer.)
In sub-section (3), line 58, to insert after the word “Minister” the words “with the sanction of the Minister for Finance.”—(Minister for Agriculture.)
Section 37, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.
(8) Every person who shall carry by land or sea or air for reward any fresh meat or offals which are being or are intended to be exported in contravention of this section shall, if such carrying is done in the course of or for the purpose of the exportation of such fresh meat or offals, be guilty of an offence under this section, unless such person proves that he did not know and could not reasonably have known that such fresh meat or offals were being exported in contravention of this section.
(10) This section shall not apply to—
(a) fresh meat exported by means of the parcels post.
Mr. Davin: I move amendment 31:—
To delete sub-section (8).
I put this amendment down to try and persuade the Minister that the penalty in the case of those who might desire to export and who did not comply with the regulations should not be put upon the carrying company, as it is proposed by the wording of this section. In the first place, the carrying company in the ordinary way will get a consignment with the veterinary officer's certificate, and once the company is put in possession of that certificate, that should in itself relieve the carrying company of any further liability.
Mr. Hogan: So it would.
Mr. Davin: I suggest that the Minister should amend the section at a later stage so as to make it definitely clear that when a carrying company accepts a consignment accompanied by a veterinary officer's certificate they should be relieved of responsibility and that the penalty section should only apply to the carrying company when they fail to produce the certificates in support of any consignments of this kind which they accept.
Mr. Hogan: If it was definitely established that they knew the certificate was fraudulent it would not be right to let them off—if they knew, for instance, that this stuff came from exporters whose licence had just been cancelled—and that could happen readily. A licence is cancelled for some reason; the exporter continues to export, and the railway company know that he is exporting after the licence is cancelled; the veterinary certificate is there; the exporter prepares a consignment with the marks on it, it is held up, and the licence cancelled; then the railway company knowingly takes the goods and they should certainly be liable for the penalty. They are safeguarded absolutely by the section, which states: “Unless such person proves that he did not know and could not reasonably have known that such fresh meat or offals were being exported in contravention of this section.” We have exactly the same provision in the Dairy Produce Act and there is no trouble about it. I think the carrying companies with whom I have been in contact realise that. From the last communication which the Department had from them, it seemed to us that they realised that it was reasonable enough. In fact, they did not know that such a provision was in the Dairy Produce Act, because we never had any occasion to operate it. Still, it is well to have it. The Deputy, if he wishes, can bring it up again on Report.
Mr. Davin: I do not pretend to speak for any carrying company in  moving this amendment, but I understand that the certificate will only be issued by the veterinary officer when he is made aware that the carrying company are in a position to accept the traffic.
Mr. Hogan: No.
Mr. Davin: I think the section should be re-drafted in such a way as to impose the penalty only when the carrying company are not in a position to prove that they have a certificate in support of a consignment.
Mr. Hogan: A certificate is issued when the carcases are examined. The owner says: “I am exporting these and I want a certificate.” He gets the certificate. The veterinary surgeon must know by what route they are going. The owner says “Holyhead,” and he gets the certificate at once. The exporter may hold these until his licence is cancelled and then he could come along with the certificate and present it to the railway company and they might accept the consignment after getting notice from us that the licence was cancelled. They should not be in a position to do that. The Deputy, if he wishes, can bring this up again on the next Stage, which will be a fortnight from now.
Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
Mr. Hogan: I move amendment 32:—
In sub-section (10) (a), page 22, line 39, to delete the words “by means of the parcel post” and substitute the words “in one lot or consignment which does not exceed in total gross weight twenty-eight pounds.”
The parcels post is eleven pounds. I am suggesting a total gross weight of 28 pounds. That is enabling a bigger weight to be sent without control.
Amendment agreed to.
Section 38, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.
Sections 39, 40 and 41 ordered to stand part of the Bill.
 SECTION 42.
Amendment 33 not moved.
Section ordered to stand part of the Bill.
Mr. Bennett: On behalf of Deputy J.T. Wolfe, I move amendment 34:
At the end of the section to add a new sub-section as follows:—
“(7) In the exercise in or upon the premises of any railway or shipping company of the powers conferred on him by this section, an inspector shall conform to such reasonable requirements of such company as are necessary to prevent the working of the traffic on such premises being obstructed or interfered with.”
Mr. Hogan: I am accepting the amendment.
Amendment agreed to.
Section 43, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.
Sections 44, 45, 46, 47 and 48 ordered to stand part of the Bill.
Dr. Ryan: I move amendment 35:
To add at the end of the section a new sub-section as follows:—
“Regulations made by the Minister under this Act shall be laid before each House of the Oireachtas as soon as may be after they are made, and if a resolution is passed by either House of the Oireachtas within the next subsequent twenty-one days on which that House has sat annulling such regulations such regulations shall be annulled accordingly, but without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done under such regulations.”
Mr. Hogan: I am accepting the amendment, but I should like to have it redrafted. It is possible that the draftsman may not change it, but I would prefer that the Deputy  should not move it now. The same applies to amendment 36 in the name of Deputy Bennett.
Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
Amendment 36 not moved.
Sections 49, 50 and 51 ordered to stand part of the Bill.
Mr. Hogan: In view of what has occurred. I take it the amendments to the Schedule will not be moved, and that Deputies will wait until I put down the amendments which I promised to circulate within a week's time, so as to give a week to Deputies before the next Committee Stage.
Amendments 37 to 44, inclusive, not moved.
Schedule ordered to stand part of the Bill.
The Dáil went out of Committee.
Bill reported, with amendments.
Report Stage ordered for Wednesday, 20th November, 1929.
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