4. Mr. TYSON WILSON
asked the Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs if he is aware that on the 14th instant another large consignment of fish from Holland was destroyed owing to it not being fit for human consumption; if he is aware that the fish caught by Dutch fishermen and sent to this country is, after being packed, often detained four or five days before it is sent by cargo boat to this country; and whether, with the object of pre- 1100 venting the waste of food that is taking place under the present system, he will arrange for the fish being transferred from the fishing boats into steam trawlers or other boats and sent direct to some port in the country from which it can be sold while fresh?
§ Lord R. CECIL
An arrangement has been made for the purchase in Holland of certain quantities of Dutch fish. As it is not at present advisable to state publicly the conditions of purchase, the particulars will be given to the hon. Member privately. The delay which has occurred in connection with the transport of certain consignments of fish and other commodities from Holland is attributable to unavoidable circumstances. Whilst regular transport from Holland is still likely to offer difficulties, it is hoped that some improvement may be secured in the future.
Is the Noble Lord aware that last year there was as much fish imported from Holland as there is this year, and that the firms who handled it had very little of it condemned? Can he not see his way to let these firms deal with the present imports?
§ Lord R. CECIL
This question has nothing to do with the purchasing firm. I shall be glad to discuss this matter with the hon. Member. I think I can show him he is quite on the wrong track.