Agriculture (Prices).

Oral Answers to Questions — Unemployment. – in the House of Commons on 28th November 1922.

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Photo of Lord Robert Cecil Lord Robert Cecil , Hitchin

50.

asked the Prime Minister whether it is proposed to institute any public inquiry into the condition of agriculture, including the question of the discrepancy between the price obtainable by the farmer for his produce and the cost to the consumer of the food made from it: and, if so, in what form the inquiry will be, and what will be the terms of reference?

Photo of Mr Robert Sanders Mr Robert Sanders , Bridgwater

I have been asked to reply. The whole of this subject is now under consideration. With regard to the specific question of discrepancy of prices, I would refer my Noble Friend to the answer I gave yesterday to the hon. Member for Frome.

Photo of Lord Robert Cecil Lord Robert Cecil , Hitchin

In view of the very serious condition of the agricultural industry, will an opportunity occur during the present Session for a discussion in this House on the subject?

Photo of Mr George Lambert Mr George Lambert , South Molton

Will the scope of this inquiry include references to railway rates and increased rates and taxes?

Photo of Mr Robert Sanders Mr Robert Sanders , Bridgwater

I cannot say the exact terms on which it is proposed to bold the inquiry.

Photo of Mr George Lambert Mr George Lambert , South Molton

Will it include railway rates and the incidence of rates and taxes?

Photo of Mr Robert Sanders Mr Robert Sanders , Bridgwater

I think it would, but I should not like to say until I look at the terms of the Act again.

Photo of Mr Albert Alexander Mr Albert Alexander , Sheffield, Hillsborough

In selling up this Departmental Committee, will the right hon. Gentleman secure that consumers' organisations are represented?

Photo of Mr Robert Sanders Mr Robert Sanders , Bridgwater

I will take all considerations of that sort into account.