§ Mr. Jopling
asked the Minister of Health what study he has made of the evidence sent him by the hon. Member for Westmorland about sickness, believed to be caused by excessive copper contained in drinks served by cold drink vending machines; and whether he will make a study of these machines to assess the extent of this danger.
§ Mr. K. Robinson
The responsibility for investigating particular incidents of this nature rests with the local authority. The circumstances have been fully explained in an article to which the hon. Member has drawn my attention in the April, 1967, issue of the "Public Health Inspector", a journal which is available to the staff of all local authorities. The first firm concerned has withdrawn the type of water conditioner which seemed to be involved and the second firm has investigated the circumstances of the contamination. No further investigation on my part appears necessary.
The position generally is that the Food Hygiene (General) Regulations, 1960, require that food shall not be exposed to contamination; and a Code of Practice dealing with hygiene in the operation of coin operated food vending machines will be issued shortly.