§ 40. Mr. HARDIE
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he intends to take any steps to protect the public against fraud or misrepresentation by persons or firms describing textile goods as fadeless, fast colour, rainproof, and unshrinkable, when in fact the goods are not fadeless, fast of colour, or proof against rain, and are shrinkable?
§ Mr. W. GRAHAM
The Merchandise Marks Acts provide a remedy against false trade descriptions as therein defined, but terms of the kind mentioned by my hon. Friend appear rather to denote quality which it might be difficult to bring within the statutory definition. The purchaser in most cases would probably have a civil remedy against the vendor.
§ Mr. HARDIE
Is the civil remedy one that the ordinary purchaser is capable of taking from a financial point of view, and is there not something to be done to protect the consuming public against these practices?
§ Mr. GRAHAM
There is a. great deal in what my hon. Friend says, but, after all, so far as merchandise marks are concerned, it is open to any particular trade to promote an application, and when the application is granted, they have at least that protection.
§ 41. Mr. HARDIE
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether the Textile Institute has issued, or proposes to issue, an interim report of its recommendations for fixing standards for the trade descriptions, fadeless, fast colour, unshrinkable, rainproof, wool and cotton union, and silk reinforced by rayon; and will he state which are the other representative bodies that are endeavouring to set up safeguards?
§ Mr. GRAHAM
I understand that whilst questions of the kind which my hon. Friend has in mind are engaging the attention of the Textile Institute, it is not the present intention of that body to issue any special reports on the subject. As regards the second part of the question, other bodies which are concerned with the subject are the Society of Dyers and Colourists, the British Silk Research Association, and the recently-formed British Colour Council.