I wonder would the Minister clear up something for me on this section? Do I understand from this section that colleges, hospitals and sanatoria are permitted to purchase their supplies of milk only from a registered dairy? They are not by legislation committed to using pasteurised milk?
Milk and Dairies (Amendment) Bill, 1956—Committee and Final Stages.
I think the position cannot be clearly ascertained, unless you read Section 8 with Section 9. The provisions of the two sections together provide that milk consumed in institutions of this kind will be produced under conditions identical with those required of a registered dairy. They must buy from a registered dairyman and if they are producing their own milk on their own premises for patients in hospital or students at school, those premises must be covered by the regulations of the Milk and Dairies Acts.
I move amendment No. 1:—
To delete sub-section (1).
I wonder would I confound the Senator and amaze the Seanad if I said that, having considered the Senator's observations on the Second Stage, I am prepared to accept all the amendments in his name?
May I say I am grateful to the Minister for his acceptance of my amendments? I should like to refer to the fact that in my county at the moment there are approximately 200 non-dairy men and of those approximately only 43 have been accepted for it yet, and it will be some time before it will be possible to enforce this section.
May I bespeak from the Senator his kindly help in propagating the gospel in West Donegal of improving cow byres and perhaps he will be good enough to inform his friends in West Donegal that grants are available for this work and that we are anxious to help them in every way we can to render the exemption of areas in Donegal unnecessary?
I fully sympathise with the points made by Senator Walsh, but in cases where these exemptions are being made, is there any time limit? Temporary regulations have a habit of becoming permanent regulations, and it may be a long time before the regulations are reviewed. I suggest there be a time limit.
I am hoping that where I exempt an area a situation will emerge in this case in which Senator Walsh and myself will be campaigning with the people in that particular area to bring their cow byres up to the necessary standards and, when that is done, I will at once revoke the exemption. It is in the full confidence that I will have the co-operation of Senator Walsh to that end that I have accepted the amendments.
I was a little disappointed to find that the Minister had not included in his amendments the name of "the consumer" in the list of those who have their right in the paragraph that is marked here "50" inside the new Part VII in Section 25, amongst those who have the right to submit samples of milk, in accordance with the regulations, for test, examination and analysis. I myself did not quite realise until the last moment that we were going to discuss this in Committee right now. I am a little disappointed that we cannot have included with the Minister for Agriculture, sanitary authority or dairyman, the name just "consumer". I feel it ought to be the right of any consumer to submit a sample of milk for analysis. I feel it would be no harm to include the word "consumer" in that paragraph.
I disagree entirely with that. I think we would be creating a whole lot of busybodies in every town and city in the country. The Local authority is charged with that responsibility and it is sufficient that the local authority will do that. If anyone feels there is anything wrong, the local councillors can get the matter investigated, but I feel that if you had a lot of busybodies sending in samples, you would arrive at an impossible position.
I think, on reflection, the Senator may realise that the appropriate remedy for a consumer, if he suspects that there is something amiss, would be to go to the medical officer of the district, to a member of the local authority or somebody of that kind who would move the authority. An analysis of each sample must be carefully done and it is a reasonably costly business, and if everybody could send in samples frivolously, maliciously or otherwise the whole procedure might become disreputable, whereas if a responsible person or any other citizen approaches the medical officer, a member of the local authority or an officer of the local authority, it is wellnigh impossible that we would be unable to get the responsible party to insist on the analysis being made.