HC Deb 02 July 1941 vol 372 cc1348-9
50. Mr. de Rothschild

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Food whether he is aware that a large number of farmers who have sold potatoes to the Ministry have not yet been paid, although in some cases delivery was made as early as February; that applications to the headquarters of the Ministry's potato section have been ineffective; and whether, in order to avoid financial hard ship to small growers, he will take steps to see that the terms of the contracts which provide for payment within 10 days of delivery, are in future strictly adhered to?

Major Lloyd George

I have made inquiries into this matter, and regret to say that there have been a number of delays in making payments to farmers in the North Cambridgeshire area for stocks of potatoes purchased by the Ministry. The delays were mainly due to the great in crease in the volume of work thrown upon the area office in the later part of the winter. Special steps have now been taken to bring the work entirely up to date, and I am glad to say that all arrears of payments will be cleared in the course of this week. Instructions have been given that all payments in future must be made in strict accordance with the terms of the contract referred to by my hon. Friend.