HC Deb 31 January 1940 vol 356 cc1141-2
52. Mr. J. Morgan

asked the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster to what extent the doubling of the bacon ration, recently announced, is an attempt to dispose of the substantial quantities of bacon left in business hands to those customers who can afford to buy bacon at the prices charged; what was the reason for such supplies being accumulated; and what steps is he taking to reduce the price?

Mr. Lennox-Boyd

The Ministry has for some time past been building up a reserve of bacon to meet possible contingencies. This reserve has now been completed, and in view of current satisfactory arrivals it has been possible to increase the amount of bacon available for general consumption. As regards the last part of the Question, this matter is under constant review in the light of all relevant circumstances.

Mr. Morgan

Is it not a fact that the same thing applies to bacon as to butter, and that certain classes of people have been unable to afford their allotted ration and have had to forego it, while other people who can afford it, are going to get their ration as well?

Mr. Lennox-Boyd

I would not deny that the price factor enters into its consumption. It is quite clear, however, that in many districts, indeed in most districts, cheaper cuts of bacon are being sold to-day, and that those cuts left on the grocers' hands are very often the more expensive.

Sir R. Acland

Why is the ration being increased when there may be a war starting in a few months time?

Sir H. Williams

What happens to the allocated supplies of bacon and butter which remain unsold?

Mr. Lennox-Boyd

If there is a danger of the stock going bad he may sell it, if he obtains the leave of the local food control committee.

Mr. Morgan

What has happened to the shilling butters I have asked about?

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