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Mr. Yeo: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what the level of Government funding for voluntary bodies dealing with stress among people living in rural areas was in each of the last three years and in the current year; and what plans he has to increase this level of support in the next year. 
Mr. Nick Brown: The Department of Health has provided funding totalling £90,000 for the Rural Stress Information Network (RSIN) and a further £118,860 for a 'Rural Minds' project between 1997-98 and this year. An official from my Department has been seconded to the RSIN for the last two years.
Mr. Yeo: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (1) how much funding for the European Centre for Organic Fruit and Nursery Stock is paid for out of his Department's research and development budget; 
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The European Centre for Organic Fruit and Nursery Stock to be set up by HRI will be a unique centre of excellence whose primary aim will be the development of a deeper scientific basis for organics and to disseminate that knowledge effectively across the organic sector, from growers through to consumers. The Centre will offer a wide range of economic, educational, environmental and efficiency benefits and will contribute further to the Government's support for the horticulture sector.
Mr. Yeo: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will publish the budget for his Department's research and development in each of (a) the last three and (b) the next three years. 
Mr. Nick Brown: The R&D budgets for 1997-98, 1998-99 and 1999-2000 were £140.5 million, £139.8 million and £139.3 million respectively. Our planned spend in 2000-01 and 2001-02 is £118 million and £120.9 million, reflecting the transfer of some £21 million to the Food Standards Agency, on 1 April 2000, to cover R&D on food science matters now within their responsibilities. These figures include a proportion of the Department's grant aid to Kew, research initiated by the Department's Economics Division, and the costs of administering the research budget. The budget for 2002-03 is subject to the Government's current spending review.
Mr. Yeo: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how much funding for knowledge transfer is provided from his Department's research budgets in each of the last three years; and how much will be provided in the current year and each of the next three years. 
Mr. Nick Brown: There are no separate budgets. However, knowledge transfer is an integral part of the role played by R&D carried out by MAFF both to inform and underpin policy-making and the Department's regulatory responsibilities; and to assist the farming, food and fisheries industries in accordance with MAFF's aim and objectives.
Mr. Yeo: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what assessment he has made of the cost of the proposed level of IPPC charges to farmers in (a) the United Kingdom and (b) each of the other member states of the European Union. 
Mr. Nick Brown: As part of the Government's Action Plan for Farming it was confirmed that, subject to agreement with the industry on a system of general binding rules, the Environment Agency's interim and longer-term charge for an IPPC permit in England and Wales should be less than half the £12,000-£18,000 originally proposed. IPPC charges in Scotland are devolved and are therefore a matter for Scottish Ministers. Arrangements for Northern Ireland are still being considered. Our inquiries indicate
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that many other member states will be passing on costs for IPPC to intensive livestock installations, although some have yet to decide how to implement IPPC and what charges will be made. The Environment Agency is currently undertaking a fuller study of the position which will inform the development of a longer-term charging scheme in England and Wales.
Mr. Yeo: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what estimate he has made of the cost to hill farmers of complying with the new conditions being attached to hill farm support payments. 
Mr. Nick Brown: The only new condition we propose attaching to less favoured area support payments is compliance with certain standards of Good Farming Practice. Responsible farmers should not incur any additional costs.
Mr. Yeo: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how much the free consultancy service to be made available to farmers seeking approval from the planning authorities for a diversification project under the England Rural Development Plan will cost; and how it will be funded. 
Mr. Nick Brown: The CAP pigmeat regime contains no provision for paying subsidies direct to pig farmers. However, in addition to the restructuring scheme announced as part of the Action Plan for Farming, the Government have helped and are continuing to help the pig industry in many ways. For example:
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Mr. Yeo: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what plans the Government have to reduce funding for hill livestock compensation allowance payments and its successor schemes after 2000-01. 
Joan Ruddock: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will place a copy of the specification for the BRIGHT research project, carried out by NIAB and funded by his Department, together with any interim results in the Library. 
Ms Quin: BRIGHT is a LINK project in the MAFF-sponsored Sustainable Arable Production through Precision Input Optimisation (SAPPIO) Programme. It is being conducted by a consortium of industry and academic partners grant aided by UK Government Departments. This consortium is responsible for publicity and has publicised the scientific approaches, objectives and progress of the research. The publicity programme includes articles in the MAFF-produced Agri-LINK Newsletter. The research is being conducted by the Institute for Arable Crops Research, the National Institute for Agricultural Botany, and the Scottish Agricultural College.
Joan Ruddock: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what research has been undertaken by the Pesticides Safety Directorate into the impact of herbicides on genetically modified herbicide tolerant crops; and if he will publish the results. 
Ms Quin: The Pesticides Safety Directorate (PSD) co-ordinates a research programme which supports the risk assessments carried out during the approval process and investigates ways of minimising pesticide use. This includes work on human health and environmental consequences of herbicide use.
The Government also support a number of projects on GMHT crops. In particular, the BRIGHT project, part funded by industry, includes work on the impact of herbicides on GMHT crops. This project started in April 1999 and is due to last for four years. The results will be published.
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