asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Food whether he will assure the House that it is the policy of his Ministry, after making the necessary price control and marketing regulations, to leave the handling and distribution of commodities such as cocoa, potatoes and soft fruit, to existing pre-war organisations, who have trained staffs with long experience in these matters?
In the case of the three products mentioned, and all other food products generally, it is the policy of my Noble Friend to utilise pre-war channels for handling and distributing commodities so far as this is practicable under wartime conditions and is compatible with the need for equitable distribution combined with the utmost economy in man-power and in transport.
Is not my hon. Friend aware that the handling of these commodities by persons who, however worthy, have no previous experience leads to waste and chaos and is against the national interest? Will he please make further inquiry as the statement in his answer does not coincide with the facts as I know them?