§ 61. Mr. HANNON
asked the Minister of Agriculture whether his attention has been called to the presence of the French steamer "Glaziere" in British waters with a cargo of 40,000,000 Chinese eggs; whether these eggs are being offered for sale in this country; whether they are being marked in any way to indicate their origin; and what measures he proposes to adopt to safeguard British poultry farmers against competition of this nature?
§ Captain BOWYER
I have been asked to reply. My right hon. Friend has seen a reference in the Press to the cargo to which my hon. Friend refers, but he has no information as to its destination. The importation of this shipment would not, however, be a new feature in the trade, since large quantities of eggs are regularly imported from China. Imported eggs arc not at present required to bear an indication of origin at the time of importation, but a requirement to this effect is embodied in a draft Order-in-Council now before Parliament. In addition, home producers are taking steps to meet the competition of imported supplies by reorganising their marketing arrangements on the basis of the Agricultural Produce (Grading and Marking) Act of last Session.
§ Mr. HANNON
This is a very serious question. Will the hon. and gallant. Gentleman make representations to the Minister of Agriculture to take early steps to prevent the importation of Chinese eggs of any quality into this country?
§ Captain GARRO-JONES
Are these eggs in shell or in barrel, and, if in barrel, how can the provisions of the Merchandise Marks Act be complied with?