13 December 1996

Grain commission cuts

GRAIN merchants face cuts next year in the commission they get for collecting farmer levies going to the Home-Grown Cereals Authority.

At present, dealers take 5%, but from July 1 next year this is being cut to 3.7%.

Lord Lucas, MAFFs spokesman in the Lords, said the reduction was due to the fact dealers themselves were contributing less to HGCA funds, while the proportion coming from growers had increased. "This means that a commission of 5% of the gross levy now takes a disproportionately large share of the growers contribution."

The new rate of 3.7% makes the deduction for merchants the same in monetary terms as they were getting in 1995/96, the last year before growers agreed to a 10p rise in their own levy contribution to 40p/t.n