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Meat Supplies, East Scotland

Volume 529: debated on Monday 5 July 1954

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asked the Minister of Food what complaints he has received from the east of Scotland regarding the quantities of beef, mutton and pork available during the last 10 days.

The Scottish Federation of Meat Traders' Associations has complained of a low proportion of beef in the final meat allocation.

Taking things broadly, is it not very satisfactory that these few days at the end of rationing and beginning of derationing have passed off with so little dislocation?

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that, while there may be complaints about the quantity in East Scotland, according to reports today the quantities of meat at Smithfield Market were actually excessive, but that the prices were the highest ever known in the history of the trade? Can he suggest how to bring the prices down in the interests of the consumers?

I suggest that the right hon. Gentleman should not jump too speedily to condemnation of the first day of freedom.

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that I am not condemning anybody or anything? I am only asking whether, in view of the high prices recorded at Smithfield Market this morning, the hon. Gentleman can suggest how to get the prices down.

My suggestion is that we should wait for a few days to see from experience the prices at which meat is sold.