HC Deb 25 November 1965 vol 721 cc737-8
25. Mrs. Joyce Butler

asked the First Secretary of State and Secretary of State for Economic Affairs if he will refer to the National Board for Prices and Incomes the increase in jam prices which has followed from a decrease in the size of jam jars.

Mr. George Brown

According to my information, no such increase has in fact occurred.

Mrs. Joyce Butler

In view of the fact that jam in 12 oz. jars is sold at the same price as jam in 1 1b. jars, which means an increase of a third in the price per 1b., and that there is no indication on the label of better quality, as the manufacturers claim, is it not clear that the public needs protection against such an increase in price without clear labelling? If my right hon. Friend has no information on this, will he institute a full inquiry, because I can assure him that it has happened and I think there is a danger that other manufacturers will follow suit?

Mr. Brown

I think not. The hon. Lady is clearly referring to the report of the Chief Inspector of Weights and Measures into which we looked very closely. I am told that only a few manufacturers are selling jams in 12 oz. jars. These are special kinds which are more expensive to produce, and all have been selling in the same way for more than a year. We have no evidence at all that ordinary jam is being sold in the smaller jars, except in one case into which we inquired, where it is also being sold at a lower price.