asked the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence when some report may be available to the House of Commons of the Sub-Committee of the Committee of Imperial Defence, of which the Minister for Co-ordination of Defence is chairman, as to the examination of the problems relating to food supplies in time of war; and whether he can give any information regarding the progress of the new food defence plans department to deal with the formulation of plans for the supply, control, and distribution of feeding-stuffs for defence purposes?
The Sub-Committee in question is, as my hon. Friend observes, a Sub-Committee of the Committee of Imperial Defence, whose reports are confidential. With regard to the Food (Defence) Plans Department, I have nothing to add to the reply which was given by my hon. Friend the Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Trade to a question by the hon. and gallant Member for Cambridge (Lieut.-Commander Tufnell) on 26th January last.
asked the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence what is considered to be the minimum quantity of production of the various home-grown foodstuffs to ensure the safety of food supplies in time of war?
My hon. Friend will realise that it is impossible to predicate any scale of home production as the minimum necessary to ensure the safety of food supplies in time of war. The Government's consideration of this question has been necessarily directed to ensuring an ample supply from all sources. It would not be in the public interest to furnish information of the kind desired.
asked the Prime Minister whether his attention has been called to a speech made by the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence at Fareham; if this speech represents the policy of the Government; and will he say what schemes in agriculture require adjustment, amendment, and/or replacement?
With regard to the first two parts of the question, I would refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave yesterday to a similar question from my hon. Friend the Member for Kincardine and Western (Sir M. Barclay-Harvey). With regard to the last part of the question, I do not think my right hon. Friend intended to do more than indicate in a general way that the measures that have been adopted to promote the welfare of the agricultural industry must necessarily be subject to review in the light of experience.