HC Deb 16 October 1946 vol 427 cc891-2
54. Air-Commodore Harvey

asked the Minister of Food what steps have been taken to prevent the recurrence of dumping fresh herrings into the sea.

Dr. Summerskill

Herrings dumped during the present season to date account for about 0.2 per cent. of landings, and were mostly of poor quality. My right hon. Friend has encouraged the consumption of herrings in this country by a reduction in price, by advertising, by a relaxation of restrictions on their use in catering establishments, by improved transport for distribution and by means of providing "Drikold" refrigerators in the railway waggons. These measures have not been without effect, for this season consumption in (he home market has gone up by 38 per cent. over 1945. In association with the fisheries Ministers and the Herring Industry Board, arrangements have been made for the export of large quantities of cured and klondyked herrings; and, during the East-Anglian season a start will be made with turning surplus herrings into oil and meal.

Air-Commodore Harvey

In the event of exceptionally heavy landings of catches this autumn, will the hon. Lady consider sending vessels direct to Hamburg, or other German ports, to land their herrings there?

Dr. Summerskill

We have been doing that to a great extent this year.

Mr. Henderson Stewart

Is the hon. Lady satisfied that her Department are doing all they can to help in the more scientific methods of processing herrings where they are landed?

Dr. Summerskill

We are doing everything possible, but the hon. Member must realise that there is another Department concerned in this, namely, the Scottish Department.