HC Deb 08 March 1954 vol 524 cc1728-9
31. Lieut.-Colonel Lipton

asked the Minister of Food what controls he will continue to exercise after margarine is derationed, over raw materials used in the manufacture of margarine.

Major Lloyd George

Margarine will be subjected to the same controls as other manufactured foods to ensure its whole-someness. I shall shortly be considering a recommendation by the Food Standards Committee proposing a minimum vitamin content. Control over the import of raw materials will, where necessary, be exercised by my right hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade.

Lieut.-Colonel Lipton

Does that mean that the controls will be continued by the President of the Board of Trade so that the Ministry of Food stocks of edible oils and fats will be disposed of without a ruinous loss to the taxpayer?

Major Lloyd George

No, that is not the control I had in mind. The stocks borne by the Ministry of Food will be sold in the ordinary way.

Dr. Stross

Will the right hon. and gallant Gentleman have any control over the price of margarine? Is he aware that reports state that the price of margarine will go up to 2s. and the price of butter up to 5s. a lb.?

Major Lloyd George

There will be no control on the price. While I am not making a prediction about the price, I would say that there is just as much likelihood of it not being increased. As the hon. and gallant Gentleman will have seen in the Press, there will be quite a lot of competition going on here. Whereas the better class margarines may increase in price, there will be on the market at about the same price as today margarine of exactly the same quality as today.