HL Deb 27 January 1960 vol 220 cc766-8WA

asked Her Majesty's Government—(1) whether they have yet received a Report from the Food Standards Committee on the subject referred to them in June or July, 1956, after a debate on the composition of flour and bread. (Lords Parliamentary Debates, June 27, 1956, Vol. 198, col. 91), and whether the Report will be published; (2) Whether the Government's medical and scientific advisers and the Medical Research Council still hold the conclusions which they presented in evidence before the Cohen Panel of 1956, and which differed from those of the Panel. (Cmnd. 9757/1956, page 27, last paragraph); (3) Whether the composition of white flour and bread adopted on the advice of the Panel remains unchanged; and (4) What bleaching agents or"improvers" are at present in use in the preparation of flour.


The following are the answers to the four questions:

  1. (1) No, my right honourable friend will, however, consider the publication of the Report as soon as possible after he has received it. This is not likely for some months yet.
  2. 768
  3. (2) The conclusions of the Panel on the Composition and Nutritive Value of Flour (the Cohen Panel) were accepted by the Government and there has been no reason to re-examine the matter.
  4. (3) The recommendations of the Cohen Panel were incorporated in the Flour (Composition) Regulations, 1956 (S.I. 1956, No. 1183) which have not been subsequently amended.
  5. (4) The bleaching agents and"improvers" in use are nitrogen dioxide, chlorine, chlorine dioxide, potassium bromate, potassium per-sulphate, benzoyl peroxide and sulphur dioxide.

House adjourned at a quarter before seven o'clock.