HC Deb 14 October 1942 vol 383 c1615
25. Mr. Mathers

asked the Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies to what extent food rationing has been put into operation in Barbados; and whether similar action will be taken in other West Indian Colonies?

Mr. Harold Macmillan

The consumption of rice and edible oil is at present subject to restriction in Barbados and an individual rice rationing scheme is being prepared. In addition the necessary organisation has been set up to enable more comprehensive rationing to be introduced if necessary. As regards the other West Indian Colonies, a comprehensive rationing scheme has been drawn up in Trinidad, and I expect shortly to receive further information from the other Colonies.

Mr. Mathers

The Minister said, "if necessary." Has it not come to the knowledge of the Government that food rationing is necessary?

Mr. Macmillan

I said it would be extended to other commodities. There are certain difficulties about the institution of a comprehensive system of rationing in the Colonies.

Mr. Sorensen

Is the rationing relative to the normal low standard prevailing in the West Indies, or to a more ideal standard?

Mr. Macmillan

It is relative to the difficulties we have to face in obtaining supplies from abroad.

Mr. Sorensen

How does it work?