HC Deb 27 November 1922 vol 159 cc269-70
24. Mr. HURD

asked the Minister of Agriculture what steps he is taking to investigate the exact extent and character of the intermediate charges upon milk and other agricultural produce between the farm and the home, so as to ensure the fair treatment both of producer and consumer?


asked the Prime Minister whether his attention has been directed to the discrepancies between the prices paid to producers and those charged to consumers; whether he is aware of the existence of profiteering by middlemen; and if it is the intention of the Government to take steps to put a stop to this practice which imposes additional burdens on the people?


asked the Prime Minister whether the Government proposes to set up a Select Committee to inquire into the causes of the discrepancy between the prices of wheat and bread and of cattle and meat; and, if so, when that Select Committee will be appointed?

46. Major KELLEY

asked the Prime Minister if he will appoint a Committee with the fullest powers possible to inquire into the question of the price of foodstuffs?


I am proposing to a Departmental Committee to into the methods and cost of and distributing agricultural, horticultural and dairy produce and to consider whether and, if so, by what means, the disparity between the price secured by the producer and that paid by the consumer may be diminished. The matter is one of great complexity and I think an enquiry by means of a Departmental Committee is more likely to lead to useful results than if it were made by a Select Committee of this House. The exact terms of reference and the composition of the Committee will be announced with as little delay as possible.


In view of the great dissatisfaction in the country in regard to this matter, will the right hon. Gentleman set up the Departmental Committee at the earliest date?


He said so.


When docs the right hon. Gentleman propose to set it up?

Lieut.-Colonel MURRAY

I assume that this will have reference to England and docs not include Scotland?


I should not dare to include Scotland.