HC Deb 03 March 1921 vol 138 c2026W
Major NALL

asked the Minister of Food whether the Royal Commission on Sugar Supplies has agreed with the British refiners to withhold delivery of their landed stocks of imported refined sugar for a period of six weeks; and whether he is aware that distributors of sugar will in consequence be unable to meet public requirements, pending the arrival of privately-imported Continental sugar, owing to the inability of English refiners to meet the demand?


As the British refiners hold no stocks of imported refined sugar, I assume that the hon. and gallant Member refers in his question to the Government's stock of refined sugar. The agreement concluded between the Government and the sugar refiners for the sale of all the Government's supplies of raw sugar contains a provision that Government stocks of refined sugar shall be sold only for delivery six weeks after the date of contract. The hon. and gallant Member will recognise the necessity for the exercise of the utmost caution during the first weeks following the abolition of control. Any sudden flooding of the market with Government stocks would tend to discourage, if not altogether to stop, private importation. I have no fear that the supply of sugar in the immediate future will prove inadequate.