Written Answers. - Potato Prices.

113.

asked the Minister for Agriculture the steps he will take to ensure that Irish potato producers will not be subjected to competition from potatoes produced in countries with wage scales of a very low nature; and whether the Irish housewife will be protected from high prices charged by some distributors of potatoes.

The Deputy can be satisfied that I will continue to ensure the strict enforcement of the provisions of the Treaty of Rome which afford member states protection against dumping. If the Deputy can give me evidence of any other form of unfair competition, I will of course do everything possible to protect Irish potato producers. As far as the price of potatoes is concerned, I understand that the Prices Commission undertake a weekly survey of vegetable prices in an effort to ensure that supplies are available to consumers at reasonable prices. If, as the Deputy implies, some distributors charge unjustified prices, then competition from others should quickly stabilise the situation.