HC Deb 20 September 1948 vol 456 c18W
80. Commander Noble

asked the Minister of Food whether he will now say when rice will be available in the shops.

Mr. Strachey

The disturbances in Burma have caused a great reduction in rice exports from that country and as a consequence difficulty is being experienced in finding sufficient rice to meet the requirements of Asiatic rice consuming territories, including India, Ceylon and Malaya. The I.E.F.C. in Washington is at present reviewing world allocations of rice for the purpose of ascertaining whether adjustments can be made to meet or to reduce the deficiency in Asia. Steps are also being taken to procure rice from any other sources of supply which may be open to us. In the meantime and as a precaution distribution in the United Kingdom from rice stocks held here has been suspended and if it should prove impossible to meet the deficiency in Asia by other means, the possibility of having to re-ship these stocks to British territories in Asia will have to be faced. I shall make a further announcement in regard to this matter at the earliest opportunity.

89. Mr. D. Marshall

asked the Minister of Food what amount of rice has been made available in Cornwall during the last three months; and how much has been made available in the United Kingdom.

Mr. Strachey

No rice has been distributed by the Ministry of Food in any Dart of the United Kingdom during the last three months.