§ Sir W. Smithers
asked the Minister of Food if he has any figures showing the cost per pound in 1939 of distributing tea from the merchant or grower to the distributor; and what is the cost at the latest available date.
§ Sir B. Smith
I assume the hon. Member refers to the cost of distributing tea after it has reached this country. Costs of handling, blending, packeting, and all the other services undertaken by distributors varied considerably but it is estimated that these costs averaged 7 ½ per lb. in 1939. This included the grocers' profit. Present costs should not exceed the prewar average margin by more than d. ½ per 1b.