§ Sir Robert Hicks
To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what action he has taken since 1 August to persuade the major supermarkets and fast-food retail organisations to(a) use and (b) promote United Kingdom beef; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Mrs. Browning
[holding answer 5 November 1996]: In July, I launched an initiative aimed at restoring consumer confidence in British beef, which I believe needs to start with understanding the concerns of customers and consumers. As a part of this initiative, my officials and I have held a number of discussions with leading supermarkets and fast-food businesses about the measures which the Government have taken to protect public health, and the further steps needed to restore confidence in beef. We have also held seminars with important industry groups.