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Banana Imports

Volume 477: debated on Wednesday 19 July 1950

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54.

asked the Minister of Food whether he is aware that substantial shipments of bananas are being offered to British merchants through the enterprise of French exporters at a price equivalent to less than 5d. per pound f.o.b. West Indian Port; and if he will permit bananas so offered to be imported privately.

I know that these offers have been made, but the price asked is much higher than that which we pay under bulk purchase contracts from the West Indies; and I could not maintain the controlled distribution and price control which are still necessary as long as bananas are scarce if I allowed these imports on private account.