59. Mr. BUTLER LLOYD
asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Food if a scheme is under consideration to make Birmingham a centre for the slaughtering of cattle and the distribution of meat for Shrewsbury and Shropshire: is he aware that Shrewsbury is one of the largest and most important Smith fields in the United Kingdom, and has a commodious and up-to-date abattoir close to the Smithfield put up quite recently at great cost to the ratepayers, and that for many months numbers of cattle have been slaughtered there for the War Office; if it is essential that a distributing centre for the district be established; and if he will consider whether, in the interest of the number and importance of the producers in Shropshire, and particularly with a view to economy of transit, Shrewsbury itself, with its splendid railway accommodation, would be a much better centre than Birmingham for such a purpose?
§ Mr. CLYNES
The Food Controller has no intention of making Birmingham the sole centre for the slaughtering of cattle and the distribution of meat in Shropshire; he is fully aware of the advantages of Shrewsbury Market, and, since he is anxious to make the best use of all up-to-date abattoirs, he has under consideration the question of utilising the existing abattoir at Shrewsbury for the purpose of buying on a dead-weight basis.