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Friday, 20 February 1987
Page: 371

Senator POWELL(12.23) —I am sure that Senator Mason appreciates the Minister for Education (Senator Ryan) answering his question which is in relation to my amendment and therefore I also appreciate it. However, I just point out to the Committee that the wording of the Bill states that if:

. . . the Secretary is satisfied that-

I will read the sub-paragraph-

. . . any test growing of the variety carried out in Australia would probably demonstrate that the variety has that characteristic . . .

It is that sort of terminology in this legislation which has moved us to attempt to strike out that whole sub-paragraph because it is all a question of whether the Secretary is satisfied with a whole lot of things. I point to the use of those words in the Bill. I have no idea how anybody-the responsible person in this case is the Secretary-can possible make the kind of judgment that something would probably demonstrate. As I said when I moved this amendment, one can look at data. I suppose what is proposed is that this whole matter would be put through a computer program. One would take the rainfall, the temperatures and the soil types and put the statistics through a computer because I understand that that is what people do these days. I grew up on a farm and I am not satisfied that something which will come into this country and be sold to a farmer will be brought in on the basis of tests which I am assuming will be done through a computer. If they will not be done by actual test growing of the product under Australian conditions, I am not satisfied and I do not think the Committee should be either.