17 DECEMBER 1943, Page 13


Stx,—I was interested to see Sir W. Beach Thomas' reference to the subject of soil fertility, and to E. B. Balfour's fascinating book, The Living Soil.

Every citizen who is sincerely anxious for the rebuilding of a better Britain should give time, and thought, to the subject of the relationship between method of soil cultivation and the health of plants, animals and human beings. For this subject goes, literally, to the root of the matter.

One of the most controversial recommendations of the Beveridge Report is that regarding a State Medical Service, and many of us feel that all such schemes—even if they achieve their object—are only shoring- up the creaking fabric of national health ; whereas the most urgent neces- sity of reconstruction is to get down to the foundations and determine that they shall be well and truly laid. On them the health of the next generation may be built.

Too much attention, energy and money are being devoted to the patching-up of the sick and ailing, and far too little to ensuring the growth of healthy citizens who will need no such patching up. There is impressive, and accumulating, evidence to show that the foundation of Such healthy growth is in the living soil. Research in this subject is well under way, and its literature deserves the study of every thoughtful citizen who is anxious for the better future of our nation and race.—Yours