§ Dr. Little
asked the Minister of Food whether, as the foodstuffs required for the production of whisky, beer, etc., are vital and necessary at the moment for the life and welfare of the nation, he will make a statement as to the extent of the rationing of cereals to distillers and brewers?
§ Mr. W. S. Morrison
In view of the limited supply of cereals available for animal feeding-stuffs, the Government have decided to make an Order restricting the output of whisky and other potable spirits for the current year to one-third of last year's production. The output of beer will be permitted to continue at a level not exceeding that of last year. To ensure that the Government's intentions are carried into effect with the least inconvenience to the industries concerned, advisory committees representative of distillers, brewers and maltsters are being set up by my Department. Steps will be taken to ensure that purchases of cereals for brewing or distilling are not made in excess of requirements for this year's permitted production. The consumption of sugar for brewing will, in accordance with arrangements made for the reduction of supplies for other industrial purposes, be reduced to 70 per cent. of normal requirements. Supplies of cereals will, if necessary, be available to meet the deficiency. I am glad to be able to state that I have been assured of the co-operation of the industries concerned in giving effect to the Government's wishes.