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Pork (Imports)

Volume 464: debated on Monday 9 May 1949

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the Minister of Food the quantity and value of the pork which he has recently bought in the United States of America; if this will suffice to maintain the fresh meat ration until September; and when he expects to settle the import programme of animal feedingstuffs for 1949–50, so that a substantial increase can be made in the rations for British pigs, which will enable home production to be expanded to at least the level of 1938.

The purchase of pork in the United States is not yet complete so I cannot give quantities or prices. This pork will greatly help to maintain the carcase meat ration until home production comes along in the late summer. What animal feedingstuffs we are able to buy in 1949–50 will depend upon the outcome of our negotiations with the exporting countries, of which the two most important are Russia and the Argentine.

While the Minister is making this deal with America for pork, would he not, at the same time, make a deal with them to bring in more coarse grains, so that he can immediately increase feedingstuffs for pigs in this country, with the result that by 1950 he will get more home produced pork?

Yes, Sir, but the Chancellor of the Exchequer would certainly insist that all possible non-dollar sources should be explored first.