HC Deb 31 January 1940 vol 356 cc1140-1
51. Mr. J. Morgan

asked the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster whether he is aware that a substantial number of persons are known not to be buying their rations of butter, thus leaving substantial quantities in the hands of shopkeepers and wholesalers, and as this is due to the increased price of this food fixed by his Department, what steps he is taking to revise the price?

Mr. Lennox-Boyd

I am aware that a moderate percentage of the 4 ounces butter ration is not at present being taken up, but there is no evidence to indicate that substantial quantities of butter are left in the hands of shopkeepers and wholesalers. It is not practicable to reduce the present maximum price of butter without incurring a considerable loss. The present retail price has been in operation since September and has not been introduced as a result of rationing.

Mr. Morgan

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that there were good qualities of butters available a short time ago, in September, at about 1s. and 1s. 2d. per pound? Where have these butters gone? 1s the announcement to vitaminise margarine a preparatory step towards getting certain classes on to margarine, and other classes on to a higher butter ration?

Mr. Lennox-Boyd

Most certainly not. One hopes that people not hitherto able to buy butter may, for instance, through the improvement of individual wages and other factors, be able to buy butter, but there is no intention on the part of the Ministry of Food to grade margarine and butter according to classes.

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