§ Sir J. Eden
asked the Secretary of State for Prices and Consumer Protection what action she proposes to take to deal with the claims by the food industry that the coarseness of the British currency will create pricing problems associated with the changeover from imperial measures to metric equivalents, which may be damaging to the consumer.
Mr. Alan Williams
Most price adjustments involve rounding problems. Metrication does not necessarily involve price adjustments, but where, for example, a metric pack is a different size from the one it replaces, there may be a need to round prices up or down to the nearest ½p. Metrication cannot be used by manufacturers to breach the Price Code provisions. This safeguards the overall interests of the consumer. In addition, we will not hesitate, where necessary, to use the price marking powers under our Prices Act 1974 to enable consumers to make the value for money judgments to which the hon. Member attached such importance in the 1972 White Paper on Metrication—Cmnd. 4880.