§ 27. Sir HARRY BRITTAIN
asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Overseas Trade Department whether the effort to 846 encourage the consumption of Empire fruit has been successful; what increase there has been in the two years; and what efforts are being made to encourage greater consumption in the future?
§ Mr. AMERY
I have been asked to reply to this question. I am glad to be able to say that the efforts which have been made to encourage the consumption of Empire fruit in this country have met with considerable success. The value of the imports of Empire fruit in 1924 was £10,140,000, representing 21 per cent. of the value of the total imports of fruit, and in 1925 £11,720,000, representing 25 per cent. of the total imports. Comparable figures are not yet available for 1926, but the imports of South African peaches, plums and nectarines and Palestine oranges in that year show substantial increases over those of the previous year. In reply to the last part of the question, the Empire Marketing Board is endeavouring in various ways to increase the consumption of Empire fruit in this country. Publicity is being steadily directed towards this end, and in addition efforts are being made by means of economic investigation and scientific research to suggest methods both of increasing the production of fruit within the Empire and of improving the conditions under which it is packed, transported and marketed.
§ Mr. SMITHERS
Can the right hon. Gentleman say what progress has been made with the Murray River Settlement?
§ Mr. LOOKER
Will the right hon. Gentleman take steps to see that this Empire fruit is made available in future at cheaper prices?
What steps is the right hon. Gentleman taking to promote the increased consumption of British grape fruit?