HC Deb 22 March 1948 vol 448 c2570
43. Mrs. Jean Mann

asked the Minister of Food if he is aware that onions were unprocurable from any shop in Glasgow during week ending 14th March, and at the same time these were selling in large quantities at more than double the controlled price on all the barrow-stances of the city; and can he indicate the source of supply to the Glasgow barrow-stances.

Dr. Summerskill

These alleged irregularities have already been brought to the notice of our enforcement officers and investigations are proceeding. My hon. Friend may like to know that since January, 1947, over 160 successful prosecutions against street traders in Glasgow have been undertaken.

Mrs. Mann

Does not my hon. Friend know the source of supply? Could not her enforcement officers tell her that they know where these barrows are being loaded every day, and the exact spot at which they are being loaded? Does not my hon. Friend also know that bananas like these are being sold every day in large quantities in the streets of Glasgow? Does she doubt that?

Dr. Summerskill

No, I do not doubt what my hon. Friend says. I will let my hon. Friend have the information.

Sir W. Smithers

Is it not apparent that, in spite of these prosecutions, this has been a complete triumph for free enterprise?

Mrs. Castle

Can my hon. Friend hold out any hopes to the House that supplies in the coming months will be sufficiently great to make this "under-the-counter" business unnecessary?

Mr. Gallacher

Will the hon. Lady arrange for the bananas which have been displayed by my hon. Friend to be placed in the Library?