HC Deb 09 November 1933 vol 281 cc325-6
77. Brigadier-General BROWN

asked the Minister of Agriculture whether he is aware that under the Milk Marketing Scheme consumers in many country districts are paying more for their milk than they were last winter, while at the same time producers in those districts are to get less for their milk and are to be paid monthly instead of fortnightly; and whether he will take some steps to remedy this state of affairs?


I am informed that in some districts, the retail price of milk is higher than a year ago, but until the regional pool prices are computed by the Milk Marketing Board, the amount received by producers will not be known. Under the provisions of the Milk Marketing Scheme, the determination of the accounting period is a matter for the Board to whom, as my hon. and gallant Friend will appreciate, producers should direct such representations as they may wish to make on this subject.

Brigadier-General BROWN

Can the right hon. Gentleman say why the price of milk in country districts has gone up?


The price of milk has to be worked out in conjunction with the Milk Marketing Board.


May I ask whether the Milk Marketing Board have any power to control retail prices, which apparently in some cases have been unwarrantably increased?


The retail prices are fixed by the retailers themselves in the districts in which they are operating.


What power have the consumers to check these retail prices?


In the first place, the consumer can complain to the retailer that the price is unreasonably high, and if there is a genuine cause of complaint, consumers can approach the Consumers Committee and the Investigation Committee by which machinery is provided for investigation and settlement, of such complaints.

Lieut.-Commander AGNEW

Has the Consumers Committee been set up?


It is in process of being set up, and its composition, and also the composition of the Investigation Committee, will be announced at an early date.