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Meat (Imports From France)

Volume 463: debated on Wednesday 30 March 1949

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asked the Minister of Food what is the size of the meat surplus which France has offered to him as available for export during the next six months; and how much of it he hopes to buy for this country.

The French Authorities have informed us that a few thousand tons of frozen pork are likely to be available for export to this country during the next few months. We will buy all this pork if price and quality are satisfactory and provided that arrangements for safeguarding animal health can be made effective.

Is my right hon. Friend aware that certain newspapers are giving the impression that France has a considerable surplus of meat available for immediate sale to this country and that her Department is wantonly refusing to take it? For the sake of the people of this country, will she please make it quite clear that that is not the situation?

I am only too pleased to make it quite clear that we are co-operating with the French authorities in this matter.

Can the Minister say why we are not getting meat from Ireland instead of horseflesh from the Continent?