HC Deb 25 February 1952 vol 496 cc692-3
21. Mr. Dodds

asked the Minister of Food what action he proposes to take to ensure a fair distribution of scarce foods, in view of the increasing difficulty in obtaining non-rationed foods consequent upon import restrictions; and if he will introduce points rationing at an early date.

Major Lloyd George

I would refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave to the hon. Members for Gravesend (Sir R. Acland) and Wandsworth, Central (Mr. Adams), on 21st November, 1951.

Mr. Dodds

Does the right hon. and gallant Gentleman consider that points rationing would be too expensive? If so, would he give consideration to a system of unit vouchers for retailers as in the case of dried fruits, particularly in view of the canned meat situation which is becoming desperate, through unfair distribution?

Major Lloyd George

I do not accept the suggestion about unfair distribution. As I said in answer to a previous Question, I am always watching the matter very closely. The fact is that the commodity position in these articles at the moment is far better than it was when the points rationing scheme was abandoned.

Sir W. Smithers

Is my right hon. and gallant Friend aware that the principle over-ruling all these matters is this: that if we restrict consumption we restrict production?