There are three matters dealt with in this Bill, and the first has relation to travelling creameries. I need not repeat what I have said in regard to them. The point is that the travelling creamery has to be registered under this Bill also.
Public Business. - Creamery (Amendment) Bill, 1934—Second Stage.
Has this reference to proprietary creameries?
For the present they are owned by the Dairy Disposals Board. There is nothing to prevent a co-operative society registering a travelling creamery under this or under the Dairy Produce Bill. The second point deals with certain illegal institutions such as have been set up in County Cork and other districts. These are cases where a number of farmers come together and are supplied by some unknown individual with separating and churning machinery. The individual is fairly well known to the Department of Agriculture, but it is impossible to prove in law who he is. He supplies the machinery, and the farmers come along and get the milk separated and the butter made and sold. These institutions are interfering with established creameries. They should be compelled to register if they are creameries, and if they are not creameries they should be compelled to close. Our difficulty is to name the individual and serve a notice on him.
It is proposed in this Bill to get the same power as they have in municipalities. In the case of condemned houses, where the owner of a place is unknown, the notice is nailed on the door. If the owner does not appear in court the case would be dealt with in the ordinary way, and if he does appear in court he can defend his case to the best of his ability. The judge can then order, under the Act, the closing of the premises or compel the owner to seek registration and so on as the main 1928 Act lays down. There are seven or eight of these institutions with which we want to deal. They are set up in our good creamery districts, but they have none of the expenses which the ordinary creameries have, either in the way of levies, registration fees, or anything else. For a time, at any rate, they are able to pay attractive prices for milk. They are doing damage to creameries without playing their part in the general creamery development.
The third point has relation to Section 5, which deals with the control of the use of milk products and byproducts. We have had some difficulties with regard to the registration of premises. In one case, where a partial condensing of milk was done, we found it was impossible to invoke the law because the Creamery Act of 1928 was not drawn to cover the case. There would also be the case of a creamery starting out and perhaps spending a considerable sum of money in going into one line of business. All the other creameries would stand by to watch how that creamery would get on. If it succeeded they would follow suit and try to get the business, and if it did not succeed they would let that creamery go down and lose all its capital. We are anxious to give a certain amount of protection to persons embarking on a large expenditure in the case of a new product. Section 5 strengthens the main Act of 1928 with regard to the issuing of licences for dairy products. I do not know if there is very much in the measure apart from that, but I shall be glad to answer any questions.
There must be some sort of demand for this product of what I might call the pirate creameries?
There is. It is known as farmers' butter, and it has a good market.