HC Deb 18 August 1919 vol 119 cc1928-9W
Lieut.-Colonel THORNE

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Shipping Controller what was the total carrying capacity of the British-owned refrigerated fleet, as measured in 56-lb. mutton car cases, on the declaration of war in August, 1914, in August, 1916, and at the present moment?


I am unable to give the total carrying capacity in 56-lb. mutton, carcases, and the particulars for August, 1910, are not available. The following are the figures, stated in tons of meat:

Aggregate meat capacity. Tons. Annual steamer capacity. Tons.
1914 294,000 588,000
1916 260,000 520,000
1919 252,000 504,000
South America—
1914 151,001 604,000
1916 136,000 544,000
1919 156,000 624,000

Lieut.-Colonel THORNE

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Shipping Controller whether he will state what carrying capacity of refrigerated tonnage in 56-lb. mutton carcases is allotted at present to-North Atlantic routes; Rio Santos, Monte Video, Buenos Ayres, Bahia Blanca and Patagonian routes, and Australasian routes; and if this tonnage is now carrying to its full capacity?


I have been asked to reply. The refrigerated tonnage at present employed in the North Atlantic trade consists entirely of the liners usually engaged in that trade. Many of these steamers have only small refrigerated spaces and many are not suitable for carrying meat. The cargoes carried in such spaces are not subject to control, and I am not able to say in what way they are utilised. Their nominal meat-carrying capacity may be put at 100,000 tons a year. Refrigerated ships now trading to South America are capable of carrying about 600,000 tons of meat a year, and are used to their full capacity. It is not possible to state the tonnage assigned to various ports, as this changes from time to time. The quantity of meat carried from Patagonia is about 20,000 tons a year. Refrigerated steamers on the Australasian routes have an aggre- gate insulated capacity of 25,200,000 cubic ft., equivalent to about 500,000 tons of meat per annum, but much of this space is required for the carriage of butter, cheese, and other refrigerated produce.