The initial imports of grain by the Peele government meant that for the first year there was very little death. The problem came when the grain merchants lobby complained, and voted out the Peele Government in the next election because their profits were eliminated by all the free grain. The Whig party took over, stopped the grain imports and imposed free market trading on Ireland hoping that “the free market” would provide food as people were still willing to buy. The expected food never came, as Europe had also suffered from the blight, and food was in high demand there too. Winter arrived and the people starved in their millions and left. The Whigs reversed all their policies and began to import grain again, but the damage was done, and it would take over a decade for Ireland’s food supply to stabilise again.