Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Agricultural Instructors.

asked the Minister for Agriculture if he will state the number of agricultural inspectors employed by his Department and by county committees of agriculture at present and during the same period in 1951.

Mr. Walsh

128 instructors in agriculture are at present employed by the county committees of agriculture. The corresponding figure three years ago was 88.

Instructors in agriculture are not employed directly by my Department nor were they three years ago, but a supplementary agricultural advisory service is provided in the congested districts through Department's officers now known as parish agricultural advisory agents. The number of these officers at present employed is 111 as compared with 139 three years ago.