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UNITED STATSS DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
Washington, D»C.

PROBABLE NECESSITY FOR

HATIONIJrG ESSENTIAL CIVILIAN GOODS

Food rationing should be expanded ai rapidly as possible* All
essential food items for which the demand will exceed the supply for an
oxtonded period should bo included. Although farm production has been
running at rocord levels for several yo-prs and 19^2 production was 15
percent higher than a year ago and by far the largest in history, the
demand will exceed supply for a number of farm connoditios because:
1«

Imports are reduced for such cor.imodities as sugar, coffee

and vegetable oils*
2»
.

#

Government purchases are extremely heavy, as is shown by the

following table:

1943 Military and
Lend-Lease requirements in percent
of 19^-2 production

Commodity

Meat
Milk and products in terns of milk
Eggs
'
Canned vegetables
Canned fruit and juices
Dried fruits
Dry beans
Dry peas
Lard
Soybean and Peanut Oil

*

31
15
28
3&
53
53
32
hi
38
lU

*

3»

Civilian pur chasing power is highest on record.

k9

There is need for accumulation of reserves against increased

demand in the future.




- 2—
Therefore, rationing is necessary because:
1.

It results in equitable distribution betweon individuals.

2.

It results in equitable distribution of supplies through-

out the yo?.Tm
3 - It prevents w^.ste and hoarding.
.
*+•

It will enable us to obtain more benefit from our food supply

since it will tend to balance the need for the scarce protective foods
with the foods in greater supply. lor example, fluid milk could be given
in gro-ter quantities to children and mothers than to others who could
obtain thoir dietary needs froo other sources.
It is recognized that rationing involves many administrative
difficulties yet a single comprehensive rationing -program perhaps will
present less total difficulties than will result from a piecemeal approach
involving postponement until hoarding and scarcities occur.
Until such time as a comprehensive rationing program can be put
into effect, it seems desirable to acquaint the public with reasons
for rationing.. It should be described as a means of provonting hardships rather than causing hardships. Pending establishment of the total
rationing program, limitation and reservation orders of one kind or
another should undoubtedly be put into operation.
Also to prevent hoarding the public should be told that it will
have to deduct household stocks from ration allotments, and in flagrant
cases of hoarding a penalty should bo assessed.




/•/

CLAUDE R. WICKAHD
Secretary