§ 23. Mr. Lewis
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he will give an assurance that he will take such action as may be deemed necessary to ensure that there will be no price increase during the next six months in the goods and services and articles coming within the control of his Department so as to assist in curbing the inflationary spiral.
I have nothing to add to the reply given to the hon. Member earlier this afternoon by my right hon. Friend the Minister of Supply.
§ Mr. Lewis
What a terrible answer! Is the Minister aware that one of the reasons for the inflationary spiral is the number of wage applications that have to be made to try to pay for the increased cost of food, which has been his responsibility? Can we have an assurance that the price of food will not be increased by his action, particularly in the case of bread, which it is rumoured will cost anything from 10d. to 1s. a loaf in September? Can he assure the House that there will be no increase in the price of food?
The assurance that I can give is that our dominating consideration in these matters is what action will conduce most effectively to curing inflation.