§ Mr. Lomas
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (1) by how much the potato crop has been reduced this year compared with the previous year; and what is the market price per ton compared with the last available year;
(2) if he is aware that the reduction in the potato crop and the increase in the price per ton means an increase in the price to the consumer, and in particular the price of fish and chips; and what action he proposes.
§ Mr. Anthony Stodart
The tonnage of main crop potatoes produced for the year August, 1970, to July, 1971, was 6,918,000. For the current year it is estimated at 6,552,000. Both crops have resulted in a surplus of production over requirements of at least one million tons.108W The average price to growers for the season up to the week ending 13th May was estimated at £14.77 per ton compared with £14.48 for the corresponding period last year. As a result of the action announced by the Government on 8th March, the seasonal increase in average retail prices since then has been much smaller than in earlier years.