§ Mr. LUNDON
asked the Food Controller if he is aware of the effect upon horses in 935W London of the difficulty of getting sufficient hay and oats released to in any way sustain them; is he aware that the cab owners and poorer carter men are those most affected by the shortage of feeding-stuffs as well as by the prices charged; if he will take steps to meet the evil and have these animals put out of pain and have their owners compensated; which Department of the Government controls the release of hay and oats; and will instructions be issued to this body to deal more leniently with the users of horses?
§ Mr. CLYNES
I can assure the hon. Member that the Government have no desire to deal otherwise than leniently with the users of horses, and my Department, which controls the release of imported oats, is in constant communication with the Central Council for Civil Hay Supplies as to the best means of ensuring sustenance for town horses. Unfortunately, owing to the diminished importation of oats consequent on the paramount requirements of the American military programme, it is impossible to guarantee a fixed ration of oats for horses. The hay rations laid down for working horses in the Board of Trade Order of 25th September, 1918, are sufficient to keep horses in proper condition, but the difficulty recently has been that supplies have not been available to meet the rations allowed. No effort will be spared to ameliorate existing conditions.