HC Deb 23 June 1955 vol 542 cc1489-90
33. Mr. Remnant

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what gross profit he estimates the small baker will receive on baking 220 1¾1b. National loaves.

Mr. Amory

The gross profit is not separately ascertained, but the average net profit in England and Wales is estimated at 7s. 3d., after allowing remuneration for the proprietor's own services.

Mr. Remnant

Is my right hon. Friend aware that many small bakers find that their gross profit is only 5s., namely, about the price of a gallon of petrol, which seems hardly sufficient to allow for delivery costs and something for the small baker?

Mr. Amory

Of course the figure I gave is for baking National bread only. But I realise that the small bakers in country districts are having a difficult time, and I have the whole matter under consideration. My hon. Friend will remember that last autumn we gave an increase of 4s. per sack in the profit margin on the first 25 sacks, and I think that helps the small baker substantially.

Mr. Hayman

Would the Minister be prepared to receive a deputation on this subject? I understand that small bakers throughout the country are having a very difficult time because of the small margin of profit?

Mr. Amory

Yes, Sir, I should be prepared to receive a deputation.

37. Mr. Crouch

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food the notional profit of a small country baker on a sack of flour before the war; and what it is today.

Mr. Amory

I regret that this information is not available.

Mr. Crouch

Is my right hon. Friend aware that the bakers allege that their profit today is the same as it was before the war, and that, if that is so, they must surely be among the few people in this country who are working on the same profit margin as before the war?

Mr. Amory

I am afraid that we have not the per-war figures available and no separate current figures for the small country bakers