§ Major Legge-Bourke
asked the Minister of Food in how many areas allocations of tonnages of potatoes to his Department's agents are based on merchants' 1938–39 returns; in how many areas other methods have been adopted; and if he is satisfied that in both instances the long-established merchant and the new entrants into the trade have complete fairness in the light of the changes of conditions since 1939.
§ Mr. Strachey
The answer to the first part of the Question is none. There are 52 areas in which agents are employed. It is the general rule to allow the grower to nominate the agent, provided that the Ministry is satisfied that the nominated firm is equipped to do the business. Complaints of unfair apportionment of agents' tonnages are in consequence very rare but I will gladly investigate any that are brought to my notice.