HC Deb 11 May 1971 vol 817 cc192-3
21. Mr. Skinner

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what is the current cost of an average-sized peach.

Mr. Prior

Retail prices of peaches are not collected officially.

Mr. Skinner

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that on one famous occasion last year he thought he had a success story because peaches were falling in price? Now he cannot even claim credit for that. Will he go a little further and confirm speculations that the figure for the cost-of-living index in April will be the highest since figures were compiled? Perhaps he will urge his right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Employment to get these figures out before the local elections are concluded.

Mr. Prior

The second part of the hon. Gentleman's supplementary question has nothing to do with his original Question, to which I would only say that he is so blinded by his prejudices that he would not recognise a good peach if he saw one.

Mr. Heffer

Would the right hon. Gentleman return to the point made by my right hon. Friend the Member for Anglesey (Mr. Cledwyn Hughes) earlier about price increases? My right hon. Friend asked what the Government would do about the decision—

Mr. Speaker

Order. I should point out that this Question relates to peaches.

Mr. Heffer

I assume that the price of peaches can be dealt with by the body that would be set up if the right hon. Gentleman is prepared to carry out yesterday's decision of Parliament. Is he prepared to agree to the Motion and to put into operation the proposals passed by Parliament yesterday? If he is not prepared to do that, is it not obvious that it is this sort of situation that leads the people of this country to feel that Parliament is being brought into disrepute by the actions of the Government?

Mr. Prior

The trouble with the hon. Gentleman is that he is nearly always as much out of order when he is on his feet as he is when he is sitting down.

Mr. Charles Morrison

In view of the more auspicious climate for growing peaches inside the Common Market, is there not a likelihood that, once we are in, peaches will be cheaper?

Mr. Prior

Under Conservative prosperity peaches will be eaten much more than before.

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