§ Mr. Frank Cook
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services (1) when he expects to receive the report of the advisory committee on irradiated and stored foods;
(2) what process of public consultation is planned before any Government decision on whether or not food irradiation will be permitted in the United Kingdom.
§ Mr. John Patten
In the United Kingdom, regulations prohibit the production, importation and sale of irradiated foods for general human consumption. As I explained in my reply to the hon. Member for Leyton (Mr. Cohen) on 1 April at column496, the advisory committee on irradiated and novel foods is currently preparing its report for Health and Agriculture Ministers on the safety and wholesomeness of irradiated foods. We expect to publish the report and to invite public comment. Should we thereafter consider that any changes in the regulations are desirable, we would put forward proposals which would be the subject of further consultation.295W