Sir; I was disappointed to read your editorial (Germany 1, DEFRA 0,) in The Grocer on October 20. I was also disappointed not to be at Anuga. I had intended to speak at the British Meat dinner and then spend a whole day there. Like you, I feel that ministerial support for British firms at shows like Anuga is important. I would pay tribute to the work FFB and DEFRA put in "waving the flag." Regrettably, I had to cancel my visit at short notice: that Monday was the first day of the parliamentary session, and that afternoon I had to speak from the front bench on a question about food security in the light of events of September 11. I was only told of the question a couple of days before, and at that time it was not possible to arrange for one of my ministerial colleagues to attend, though my speech was delivered to the British Meat dinner by Gareth Steel, DEFRA's senior official in Germany. I, and my fellow ministers, will continue to support British food whenever and wherever we can. Larry Whitty DEFRA food and farming minister {{LETTERS }}