HC Deb 19 December 1938 vol 342 cc2470-3
66. Rear-Admiral Beamish

asked the Minister of Agriculture whether he is aware that the last inquiry into the terms and conditions of a contract prescribed by the Milk Marketing Board without the agreement of the trade by a committee of investigation, cost the milk industry in legal fees and other payments the sum of over £40,000; and whether he proposes to take any steps to make arbitration in the future more cheap and efficient so far as this industry is concerned?

Mr. W. S. Morrison

I have no precise information as to the amount expended by the milk industry in connection with the inquiry referred to, but I would point out that there are no legal or other fees payable in respect of appearances before a Committee of Investigation, and any expenditure which may have been incurred was due to the action of the parties themselves.

Rear-Admiral Beamish

Would not the situation be greatly alleviated by a wise supervisory milk commission such as was proposed in the Milk Bill?

Mr. Morrison

That was the intention of the Milk Bill.

71. Sir Adrian Baillie

asked the Minister of Agriculture the present average level between the price obtained for milk in this country by the farmer and the price paid by the consumer; and how this distributive level compares with that obtained in Germany, Holland,

Farm Prices and Retail Prices of liquid milk in certain countries.
Country. Average price to producer. Average retail prices. Date to which price relates.
As quoted. Equivalent in pence per gall. As quoted. Equivalent in pence per pint. Wholesale. Retail.
England and Wales. 1 17.5 (a) 3.5 (b) 1st Dec., 1938. 1st Dec.
Germany 12.44 Reichs pfennings per kilogramme (c). 11.4 24 Reichs pfennings per litr (d). 2.8 1937 19th Oct., 1938.
Holland 6.5 cents per litre (e). 8.1 14 cents per litre (f). 2.1 End of Nov., 1938. 30th Sept., 1938.
Belgium 0.88[...] francs per litre. 6.6 1.67 francs per litre. 1.6 Aug., 1938. 15th Nov., 1938.
Sweden 13.1 Ore per kilogramme. 7.6 24 Ore per litre (g). 1.7 1936 Oct., 1938
France 0.949 francs per litre. 5.8 2.05 francs per litre (h). 1.6 Sept., 1938. Nov., 1938.
United States of America. 1.69 dollars per 100 1bs. (i). 8.7 11.1 cents per U.S.A. quart (shop price) (j). 3.3 15th Sept., 1938. 16th Aug., 1938.
12.3 cents per U.S.A. quart (delivery price (j). 3.6
(a) Contract price. (f) Delivery price charged by one large undertaking.
(b) Average retail price in the United Kingdom as computed by Ministry of Labour. (g) Average of 49 localities (provisional figure).
(c) Inclusive of subsidy. (h) In Paris.
(d) Shop price in Berlin. (i) Average price received by farmers.
(e) For liquid consumption. (j) In 51 large cities (provisional figure).
81. Rear-Admiral Beamish

asked the Minister of Agriculture what proportion of the various milk products consumed in this country are made from British milk; and what proportion from imported milk, respectively?

Mr. Morrison

As the reply comprises a number of figures I propose, with the Belgium, Sweden, France, and the United States of America?

Mr. Morrison

I am circulating in the OFFICIAL REPORT a statement showing such information as is available regarding the prices paid to farmers and the prices paid by consumers, in the countries concerned. My hon. Friend will appreciate that for a number of reasons the prices and distributive margins in the different countries are not on a comparable basis.

Mr. H. G. Williams

Will this average include the average price paid by the London County Council?

Mr. Morrison

No, it will not.

Following is the statement:

permission of my hon. and gallant Friend, to circulate it in the OFFICIAL REPORT.

Rear-Admiral Beamish

Has my right hon. Friend any particular deductions to draw from the figures?

Mr. Morrison

I should prefer that my hon. and gallant Friend should look at the figures and then put down another question as to the correct deductions to be made from them.

Mr. De la Bère

Will my right hon. Friend bear in mind that the farmer wants the first place in the home market?

Following is the reply:

The proportions of the total supply of the various milk products consumed in the United Kingdom that are derived from milk produced in the United Kingdom are approximately as follow:

Product Home Produced.
Per cent.
Butter 10
Cheese 30
Cream 89
Condensed milk (whole) 94
Condensed milk (skimmed) 42
Milk powder 56

Imports of liquid milk into the United Kingdom are negligible in volume, and the quantity of milk products, if any, made from imported milk would also be negligible.

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