§ Mr. Ernie Ross
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will publish in the Official Report the letter of 21 August from Lord Gray of Contin to the hon. Member for Dundee, West on the location and contents of European Economic Community intervention food stores in Scotland.
§ Mr. John MacKay
Yes. The text of the letter was as followsYou wrote on 31 July to the Prime Minister seeking information on the contents and operation of EC Intervention food stores in Scotland and I am replying on her behalf. I attach a list showing the locations, commodities and tonnages held in Scottish stores as at 30 June. These figures have been rounded to the nearest tonne; where there is more than one store in a particular town or city, stocks held have been separately identified.The actual names and addresses and storage rates paid to individual store operators are matters of some commercial sensitivity and I cannot divulge them. However, details of the overall costs to the Government of buying and storing intervention commodities are published in the Intervention Buying Accounts, the most recent of which was presented to Parliament on 3 May 1983 as House of Commons Paper No. 360.As I pointed out in my letter of 18 July, it is impossible to quote a market value for stocks in intervention as this would depend largely on the purpose for which they are released. The only reasonable indicators of the value of stocks held are the current intervention prices which were quoted in my letter. The current intervention price for skimmed milk is £1,026.22 per tonne.Your letter also asks if it is the Government's intention to release these stocks to the general public. My earlier letter outlined various ways in which stocks are released, but it depends upon the relevant EC Commission Regulation. But it is certainly the case that stocks can be released for UK consumption, although no disposals are carried out by direct sales to the public from stores.
The list enclosed with the letter was:
Stock figures tonnes Beef Aberdeen (1) 993 (2) 48 Glasgow (1) 242 (2) 333 Perth 17 Stirling 84 Butter Aberdeen 1,284 Glasgow (1) 3,759 (2) 2,246 (3) 642 Dalcross 92 Edinburgh (1) 762 (2) 64
tonnes Skimmed Milk Powder Newbridge 360 Glenrothes 871 Aberdeen 1,060 Cumbernauld 336 Bathgate 2,280 Barley Arbroath 2,392 Drumlithie 3,424 Duns 12,789 Evanton 4,612 Fearn 541 Granton 3,316 Kirkcaldy 2,075 Penicuik 3,292 Stracathro 3,464 Turriff 1,500