HC Deb 15 May 1919 vol 115 cc1793-6W

asked the Secretary of State for War whether, in order to remove a certain amount of anxiety entertained by the friends of some of the troops stationed in Germany, a statement can be published respecting the rations provided for the Forces of the Crown serving in that country?

Captain GUEST

I am circulating in the Official Report a full statement of the information desired by my Noble and gallant Friend.

The following is the information referred to

Scale of Rations for British and Dominion Troops in Army and Cavalry Corps Areas, General Headquarters.

Normal Ration.

Part "A."
Frozen meat 8 ozs.
Preserved meat 3 ozs.
*Bread 12 ozs.
*Biscuit 3–⅔ ozs.
Pork and Beans (4 days a week) 4 ozs.
M. and V. (3 days a week) ⅙ tin
Rice 1 oz.
Oatmeal 1 oz.
Bacon 3 ozs.
Butter or margarine 1 oz.
Cheese 2 ozs.
Fresh vegetables 8 ozs.
Jam 3 ozs.
Sugar (with unsweetened condensed milk) or 2½ ozs.
Sugar (with sweetened condensed milk) 2 ozs.
Milk, condensed (sweetened or unsweetened) 1 ozs.
*Bread may be drawn in lieu of biscuits for patients in hospitals and convalescent depots. Flour may be drawn in lieu of biscuit by all who draw field ration.

Part "B."
Tea ½ oz.
Salt ¼ oz.
Pepper 1/100 oz.
Mustard 1/100 oz.
Pickles (thrice weekly)1 oz.
Tobacco or cigarettes (weekly) 2 ozs.
Matches (fortnightly) 3 boxes
Lime juice (on recommendation of medical officer when fresh vegetables are unobtainable. Not more than one issue a week should be made, except in special cases, and then only on the recommendation of an Administrative Medical Officer) 1/160th gallon

Two issues weekly may be made to men employed in dope shops, Royal Air Force.

Rum (at the discretion of the general officer commanding, on the recommendation of the medical officer. Issues may be made concurrently with any extras authorised under Section 1 (k), but must be restricted to bonâ fide rum drinkers) 1/100th gallon

Issue of rum at the rate of 400 gallons per week for Infantry Divisions, and 150 gallons per week for Cavalry Divisions, irrespective of situation of Divisions, approved from 20th November, 1918, coversall issues, including Army troops, corps troops, liberated prisoners of war, etc., and distribution left to discretion of Army commanders, etc. No additional issues will be considered.

Scales of Increase to Normal Ration.
(i) Tea ⅛ oz.
Sugar ¾ oz.
(ii) Pea soup 2 oz.
Oxo cubes Two
Cocoa and milk ⅕ tin
Tea ⅛ oz.
Sugar ¾ oz.
Cocoa powder ⅕ oz.
Milk powder ⅗ oz.

Men in trenches and men of R.H.A., R.F.A., or R.G.A., when in action, may draw daily scale of increase (i).

Army commanders may draw scale of increase (ii) daily as under:

  1. (a) During summer months for 3 per cent. of total Army feeding strengths:
  2. (b) during winter months for 15 per cent. of total Army feeding strengths.

This pool is intended to cover extra issues previously sanctioned during severe weather and active operations, and will include all issues to Labour units working in Army areas. No demands for further extras will be considered, and the distribution of the pool is left to the discretion of Army commanders.

The following increase to normal daily ration has been granted for all young soldier battalions of British Army on the Rhine:

(a) Tea ⅛ oz.
Sugar ¾ oz.
(b) Cocoa and milk ⅕ tin
Frozen Meat, 1 lb.
Preserved meat 12 ozs.
M and V Rations 1 tin
Pork and beans 2 lbs.
Baked beans and tomatoes 2 lbs.
Rabbits (including allowance for skins) 1–1/9 lbs.
Sausages 1 lb.
Frozen sausage meat 1 lb.
Sardines or small fish ¾ lb.
Tinned herrings 1½ lbs.
Tinned herrings in tomatoes 1½ lbs.
Veal loaf ¾ lb.
Bread, 1 lb.
Biscuit ⅔ lb.
Flour ⅔ lb.
Rice ⅔ lb.
Oatmeal ⅔ lb.
Rolled oats ⅔ lb.
Bacon, 3 ozs.
M. and V. Rations ⅓ tin
Sausage 6 ozs.
Butter or margarine 3 ozs.
Veal loaf 6 ozs.
Jam, 1 oz.
Dried fruits 1 oz.
Syrup 1 oz.
Honey ½ oz.
Fresh vegetables, 8 ozs.
Dried vegetables 2 ozs.
Dried fruits 2 ozs.
Oranges six
Potatoes, 2 oz.
Chestnuts (fresh) 1 oz.
Chestnuts (dried) ⅔ oz.
Granulated potatoes ½ oz.
Tea, authorised ration.
Coffee (when authorised) 1 oz.
Condensed milk (unsweetened) 1 oz.
Dried milk ⅖ oz.
Cheese 1 oz.
Veal loaf 1 oz.
Potatoes 4 oz.
Potatoes 2 oz.
Flour or oatmeal, or rice 1 oz.
Pickles, 1 oz.
Sauce (fluid) ⅓ oz.
Chutney 1 oz.
Note:—Sausages: Issues limited to twice weekly.
Oranges: Issues limited to one orange per man daily.


asked the Secretary of State for War if he will have special inquiries made as to the quality and quantity of the food rations issued to the men serving in Mesopotamia, so that those who are detained there owing to delays in demobilisation shall not have cause to complain of the insufficiency and inferiority of their food, as appears to be the case at present?

Captain GUEST

The scale and quality of the rations supplied to the troops in Mesopotamia are the same as provided in other theatres of war. The scale is considered ample, and is approved by the medical authorities as specially suitable for the climate. In these circumstances, I do not think any special inquiry is called for.


asked the Secretary for War whether he is aware that there is criticism among the troops in India as to the quality of the rations served out to them, with the result that they have to exhaust all their pay in buying essential supplementary food; and whether he will investigate the matter at once?

Captain GUEST

My right hon. Friend has asked me to answer this question on his behalf. The Secretary of State for India has received no information on this subject, but will inquire. A Committee was recently appointed to examine certain matters relating to the rations of British and Indian troops and its recommendations are now under the consideration of the Government of India.