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Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the question, ref 22779, tabled on 10 December, for what reason replies to letters from the hon. Member for the Vale of York were not received by 19 December. 
Mr. Morley: The hon. Member has been sent responses to all the letters detailed in her question, ref 22779, tabled on 10 December, except the letter dated 21 June on behalf of Mrs. P. Crosby of Thirsk about FMD, which will be sent out as soon as possible.
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Mr. Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs which household chemicals have been permitted to be tested on animals in live experiments in the UK in the next two years. 
Mr. Morley: EU legislation requires testing, including animal testing, of all industrial chemicals produced in high volume (greater than 1,000 tons per manufacturer per year) and below this level, the generation of data on new chemicals according to the amount produced. Other chemicals may be required to be tested if there are justifiable concerns. Chemicals used for particular purposes, for example pesticides and biocides (including garden pesticides and household disinfectants) and pharmaceuticals, are also required to be tested before they are put on the market. We have no information about which chemicals will be coming forward for testing in future years. Animal tests are regulated by the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986 which is a Home Office matter. The Government's policy is to reduce the number of animals used in tests and we are currently supporting changes to Pesticides Directive 91/44/EC to prevent the replication of testing on vertebrate animals.
Ms Shipley: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what plans she has to encourage (a) supermarkets and (b) consumers to buy produce from farm schemes which are (i) environmentally and (ii) animal welfare friendly; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Morley: The promotion of food produced in accordance with the standards laid down in farm assurance schemes is a matter for the individual scheme providers. The Department has, however, supported the development of farm assurance schemes and the inclusion within them of animal welfare and environmental standards. A significant proportion of farm produce in the UK is now produced in accordance with the standards laid down in such schemes. Much of this will be sold to consumers through supermarkets.
Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will make a statement on (a) matters discussed and (b) points agreed and disagreed in her meeting on 17 December with her Norwegian counterpart. 
Margaret Beckett: We had a useful and friendly discussion of issues of mutual interest, including climate change, the World Summit on Sustainable Development and the North Sea Conference, which the Norwegians will chair in March. The Norwegian Minister raised the issue of technetium-99 discharges from Sellafield, but I was unable to comment for legal reasons in advance of the statutory decision which the Secretary of State for Health and I have to take on the Environment Agency's proposed decision.
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Mr. Tynan: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will make a statement on her Department's discussions with EU institutions in the last six months regarding the reform of the Common Agricultural Policy. 
Mr. Morley: We have had a number of discussions with Commission representatives about the mid-term review of the Common Agricultural Policy Agenda 2000 decisions and the Secretary of State will be meeting Commissioner Fischler later this month. Our understanding is that the Commission are likely to report to the Agriculture Council on the review in the summer.
Mrs. Ann Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment she has made of the impact of the worldwide slump in skimmed milk powder consumption on the UK milk producing industry; and if she will make a statement on recent trends in milk prices. 
Mr. Morley: The fall in world demand for skimmed milk powder has depressed prices. Low demand in the UK coupled with low prices could lead to an increase in public intervention. That is why the Government have supported moves by the Commission to stimulate markets both at home and abroad.
The producer price for milk reflects the position in the market and, therefore, has recently shown a downward trend following a very sharp recovery compared to a year earlier. The action already taken may help arrest this trend but the price will ultimately be determined by supply and demand.
Mr. MacShane: Entertainment budgets are not held at embassy and post level. However, actual expenditure is recorded and the figures for 200001 are detailed in the table. A composite figure is shown where the FCO has more than one representation in a city.
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|Bandar Seri Begawan||29,826|
|Ho Chi Minh City||24,328|
|Port of Spain||19,574|
|Dar es Salaam||16,999|
|Rio de Janeiro||12,760|
9 Jan 2002 : Column: 916W
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