asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Food whether he is aware that the delay in granting wholesale and retail licences to fruit producers and the lack of specific instructions with regard to picking are having a serious effect upon the perishable fruit crop of the nation; and will he give immediate examination to the matter in the interests of producers, retailers and consumers alike?
I have made inquiries and am satisfied there has been no undue delay in the issue of these licences, applications for which are dealt with as quickly as possible. In the case of gooseberries only, picking was prohibited until an "appointed day." A provisional date for this was agreed with the growers' representatives but they made later representations for an earlier date. An Order was issued to give effect to this at once. All instructions given have been specific.