Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Land Project Fertiliser Scheme.

asked the Minister for Agriculture if he will state, in respect of the year 1955-56 and the present financial year to-date, (a) the number of applications received under the fertiliser scheme, part IV of the land project, (b) the number of such applications dealt with, and (c) the total expenditure in each case.

During the year 1955-56, 1,213 applications were received. Soil samples were taken in 1,163 cases and work was completed in 625 cases. The expenditure was approximately £137,000. During the first six months of the present financial year, 333 applications were received. Soil samples were taken in 373 cases and work was completed in 408 cases. The expenditure was approximately £98,000.

It has been the experience, since this scheme was initiated, that a considerable number of farmers, having been furnished with the results of the soil tests, either delay application of the required fertilisers and lime or do not proceed further with the scheme.