§ Mr. W. YOUNG
asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Food (1) whether any further guarantee can be given as to the sugar to be supplied to jam manufacturers for this year's crop; whether in the event of sugar not being forthcoming the Government has taken any steps to encourage fruit preservers to pulp home-grown fruit pending the arrival of sugar; if so, will he announce them; whether the Government has taken any steps to provide labour for harvesting the fruit crops; if so, will he state them, particularly with regard to the fruit-growing districts of Perthshire and Scotland generally; and (2) whether his Department regards preserved home-grown fruit as an essential food product; and, if so, what steps have been taken to ensure the efficient conduct of the fruit-preserving Industry in the present abnormal circumstances of sugar and labour shortage?2410W
The Food Controller is alive to the importance of preserving the home-grown fruit crop, and, as I have stated in reply to previous questions, an assurance has already been given by the Royal Commission on the Sugar Supply to jam maunfacturers that, so far as circumstances allow, the same arrangements as were in operation last year will be made for supplying them with the sugar which they require. These arrangements include provision for the pulping of a portion of the fruit crop. As regards the question of labour, I will communicate with my right hon. Friend the Minister of Labour.