Simplified Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Book 4, Chapter 5c: Production Bounties -- Herring Bounty

Chapter 5c: Production Bounties -- Herring Bounty

25 A bounty on production would more directly encourage the production of any commodity than an export bounty. 26 Production bounties have been granted sometimes. 27 Those tonnage bounties do not contribute to the nation's opulence. 28 Despite these favourable allegations, I believe the legislature was very grossly imposed on, because of the following.
  1. 29 The herring buss bounty seems too large.
31 Scotch and foreign salt are used to cure these herrings.
  1. 32 The bounty to the white-herring fishery is a tonnage bounty.
  1. 33 The tonnage bounty is given to the fishing of white-herrings, which is not well adapted to Scotland's situation.
Herring buss fishery
A Herring buss (ship)
  1. 34 In many parts of Scotland during certain seasons, herrings make a big part of the people's food.
35 When the undertakers of fisheries sell their fish at a higher price because of such bounties, we might expect that their profits would be very great. 36 If any manufacture was necessary for national defence, it might not always be prudent to depend on our neighbours for its supply. 37 It can very seldom be reasonable to tax the people's industry to support some class of manufacturers.

38 A bounty is sometimes no more than a drawback.

39 Premiums given by the public to artists and manufacturers who excel in their occupations are not liable to the same objections as bounties.


Next: Chapter 5d: Digression on the Wheat Trade