HC Deb 02 July 1942 vol 381 c509
51. Lieutenant Butcher

asked the Minister of Agriculture why the announcement of the reduction in the poultry ration was not made earlier so as to avoid hard ship and loss to many persons who have recently purchased chickens to rear for egg production?

Mr. Hudson

I assume that the hon. and gallant Member is referring to the new basis for the rationing of domestic poultry, which will not be introduced until 1st October. Domestic poultry keepers will continue to draw rations on the present basis until that date. There was no avoidable delay in the issue of the announcement after the necessity for the change, which arises in turn from a deterioration in the feeding-stuns supply situation, had become evident.

Mr. De la Bère

Is it not very desirable that this scheme should be abandoned altogether, in view of the unnecessary hardship which will be caused to many hundreds of thousands of backyard poultry keepers?

Captain Godfrey Nicholson

Will the Minister take steps to secure publicity as to the value of other forms of food, such as acorns and beechmast?

52. Lieutenant Butcher

asked the Minister of Agriculture the total amount spent in Press advertising and in other ways to encourage backyard poultry keeping; and the date on which the last advertisement appeared?

Mr. Hudson

The policy of the Government has been to assist through the Domestic Poultry Keepers' Council people who keep backyard poultry to get the best out of them rather than to encourage a wide extension of the movement. Advertisement of the kind indicated by the hon. and gallant Member has therefore not been undertaken.