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Inshore Fishermen's Catches (Prices)

Volume 438: debated on Monday 9 June 1947

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asked the Minister of Food if he is aware that, owing to the price rise in all gear, particularly nets, the catching of mackerel, skate and ray at today's prices is uneconomical; and if he will consider an adjustment in the maximum price of these fish which are caught by our inshore fishermen.

I know that the cost of fishing gear has increased, and will take this into consideration together with other relevant facts if and when price schedules are revised.

When the Minister uses the expression, "if and when", can he give any indication when the "if and when" is likely to come about, and will he also take into consideration the price rise in coal apart from the question of gear?

Prices of fish have been changed in the past, I am glad to say in a downward direction. We should be reluctant to increase maximum prices in this or any other respect. Another possibility, of course, would be to take this class of fish out of price control altogether. There are some advantages but also some difficulties in that.

Is the Minister aware that this state of affairs is affecting the livelihood of all inshore fishermen, and that unless something is done, we shall lose them?

In view of what I consider to be a most unsatisfactory reply, I give notice that I will raise this matter on the Adjournment as soon as possible.