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Sausages (Meat Content)

Volume 527: debated on Monday 17 May 1954

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16.

asked the Minister of Food if he will make a statement indicating the results of the inquiry into the meat content of sausages.

21.

asked the Minister of Food whether he will make provision to ensure good standards of meat content in sausages.

The results of the inquiry are being examined in consultation with the appropriate trade organisations, and I hope to be able to make a statement in due course.

Does the right hon. and gallant Gentleman appreciate that there is evidence that as more meat is available less is going into some sausages? There are many good manufacturers who resent the fact that there are backsliders. Will he, if he wants to go down in history as a great man, try to solve the sausage mystery?

If I were to solve the sausage mystery, I should go down in history as a great man. However, what, I think, the hon. Gentleman wants to know is this. All the public health authorities have been circulated to let us know what has happened since the decontrol of meat content, and we have had replies from about 260. The inquiries show that, on the average, the meat content is up since decontrol. There is, of course, a very great difference of opinion amongst public analysts. Some think 50 per cent, meat content is sufficient, and others that 65 per cent, is right. One goes so far as to think the content should be 75 per cent. However, I am looking into this matter, and will make a statement as soon as I can.

Is the right hon. and gallant Gentleman aware that, if he solves the sausage mystery, he will lighten the work of the courts?

Will my right hon. and gallant Friend do something through the manufacturers or others to try to get them to make sausages that taste like sausages as well as look like sausages?

The trouble with sausages, of course, is that there are so many different tastes, even in one family, that I think that a standard sausage would be extremely unpopular. I am asking the manufacturers and other interests concerned to meet me as soon as possible to discuss the result of the inquiry with them.