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Meat (Grading)

Volume 480: debated on Wednesday 8 November 1950

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asked the Minister of Food whether he will allow butchers to grade their meat as they did before the war, so that different prices may be charged according to quality.

As long as it is necessary to maintain price control of meat it will not be possible to allow butchers freedom to fix their own grades and prices.

Does not the hon. Gentleman think that it would be for the convenience of the public and of the butchers if meat were graded according to origin? For instance, more would be charged for Canterbury lamb than for the less attractive Argentinian variety. Similarly we should pay more for the best Scottish beef than for the very old English cow that we usually eat on Sunday.

At the moment we are considering with the trade, revision of the present prices. It is the subject of discussion at the present time.

Could my hon. Friend say whether the butchers will now fix the proper tickets on their counters, to show the gradings?

My hon. Friend has probably seen in the Press that some progress has been made in this matter.

Is my hon. Friend satisfied that the instructions to grading panels are adequate, in view of the fact that in Birmingham it is suggested that there is a good deal of meat graded "A" and "B" which is only fit for manufacturing purposes? Will he look at the grading instructions?

If my hon. Friend will give me particulars of what he has in mind, I will certainly look into them.