HC Deb 30 May 1921 vol 142 cc559-60
9. Colonel NEWMAN

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he will ascertain if there is an unusual quantity of imported meat now being held in cold storage in this country or on board ship awaiting discharge; is he aware that the consumer desires to have cheaper meat; and will he say if the investigations he has been able to make lead him to suppose that this hold up of imported meat is the reason why the price of meat has not fallen to a more appreciable extent?


The quantity of meat now in store in this country, or in ship awaiting discharge, is undoubtedly large; but I understand that, so far from sales toeing restricted, every effort is being made by reduction of prices to dispose of the meat. For instance, the wholesale price of certain descriptions of imported meat has fallen by more than 50 per cent. during the past two months.


Can the right hon. Gentleman tell me why the retail price has not been correspondingly reduced?


I must ask for notice of that question.


Can the right hon. Gentleman say whether the Board of Trade have any power in a case where meat is being held up for a considerable time to make them put it on the market?


My information is that it is not being held up.