§ Mr. HUNT
asked the hon. Member for South Somerset whether, in view of the fact that only one-fifth or less of the beef now sold in the principal London market is British or Irish, and that the amount has been rapidly decreasing of late years and is still decreasing, he proposes to take any action to prevent British and Irish beef from being squeezed out altogether 1078 from Smithfield Market by the operations of the American Beef Trust?
§ The TREASURER of the HOUSEHOLD (Sir E. Strachey)
As the hon. Member is no doubt aware, the question of combinations in the meat trade has quite recently been the subject of inquiry by a Departmental Committee appointed by the President of the Board of Trade [Cd. 4643]. On the information available, this Board do not see that they are in a position to take any action for the purpose indicated.
§ Mr. HUNT
Is the hon. Baronet aware that since the Committee sat it has been' publicly stated in the Press, including the Radical papers, that the City Corporation, after consultation with the Board of Agriculture, has been obliged to recognise that the American Meat Trust does control the Smithfield Market? Is he going to do nothing to prevent that?
§ Mr. LEIF JONES
Is the hon. Baronet aware that the Birmingham Guardians will only tender for meat supplied by Trust firms?