22 NOVEMBER 1930, Page 10

We agree with the critics that there are already plenty

of demonstration farms, but it seems that Dr. Addison has in view rationalized farms such as certainly have never existed here. His proposal is really a proposal for research, and money spent on truly scien- tific research is never wasted. There is a chance that every genuine experiment will disclose the vital secret. As regards the risks of multiplying small holding's, it is of course true that there were heavy failures among .the ex-Service men who were settled on the land after the War, but we are convinced that small holdings—technically defined as farms up to fifty acres—hold out the hope of the future. They can be manned by farming families with very little, if any, costs for outside labour. If the disasters soon after the War are separated from the ordinary finance of small holdings it will be found that the number of failures was by no means formidable, and that most were due to the absence of proper means of marketing. It will be useless for the Govern- ment to encourage much higher production from the land if an end is not put to the present system by which the middlemen—without personal blame to themselves, for they are only making money like other men where they can—obtain most of the profits. Mr. Lloyd George pointed out that Great Britain had only seven per cent. of its people on the land, whereas France had forty per cent., Germany over thirty per cent., and even the highly industrialized Belgium eighteen or nineteen per cent. * 4, r *