§ Mr. ROSE
asked the Food Controller if it is intended promptly to give up importing food by his Department on account of 290W the nation; and, if so, how the Ministry proposes to protect the public from the effects upon the price of foodstuffs of the shipping freights just announced by the shipping rings which are more than twice as great as the State freight, rates now charged to his Department by the Ministry of Shipping?
No general decision as to cessation of purchase and importation by the Ministry of Food can be reached, since the position varies in respect of each particular commodity. In reaching a decision on any commodity I am bound to consider the available world supplies and probable demands and the arrangements made by the Governments of the exporting countries. It would clearly be unwise to abandon the policy of purchase of any particular commodities until the conditions are such that the ordinary trade can bring in supplies at a price not above that ruling at present.