In Somerset samples of all kinds submitted and examined amounted to 1,880. Out of these, 1,666 were taken under the Food and Drugs Act, 1898, and the Statutory Rules and Orders issued by the Ministries of Health and Food and the Public Health Acts. It may be observed, though the fact is but too well known to. all those who are officially concerned with the administration of the Acts referred to above, that the number of Rules and Regulations is now very large. This number, by the very nature of the conditions that gave rise to them, will certainly increase. It follows that though the number of samples submitted may not increase, the work in connection therewith will certainly do so. Thus out of forty‐one samples described as either adulterated or incorrect, about half were incorrectly labelled. If this were only a matter of name and address the error or omission could be easily put right, but claims may be made by the vendors that cannot be substantiated. This is left to the Public Analyst to decide. Thus: “Should not bear a reference to scrofula”; or “‘Double strength’ has no meaning”; or “Should not be described as a ‘Cocktail’.” The Public Analyst has the double duty of correcting all sorts of verbal inaccuracies or exaggerations, and carrying out an analysis, often of a most complex description, and then interpreting the results of that analysis. Out of 689 milks examined, 72, or 10·4 per cent, were adulterated, against only 4 per cent in 1946. “This apparent increase in adulteration is probably due to the fact that a large number of samples were taken as a result of complaints received from milk factories.” Cow fat content was in some cases directly traceable to the large proportion of Friesian cows in the herd. The farmers were recommended to introduce into their herds cows of a breed giving milk with a higher proportion of fat. The old fault of bad mixing was responsible for some other prosecutions. Thus 8·67 per cent of fat at the top of the churn and 2·70 at the bottom at the time of delivery. The Report observes that a substance called Ground Almond Substitute should correspond to some extent with ground almonds. This remark was suggested as a result of examining a sample of the alleged substitute. It had a slight odour and flavour of almonds, but no further resemblance to almonds. The 4·2 per cent of fixed oil was mainly derived from the wheat—85 per cent—and the soya flour—15 per cent—of which it was composed. As flour costs 3d. a lb., and soya flour 10½d. a lb., it is pointed out that the cost of this mixture would be 4½d. a lb. It was sold for 2s. a lb. We are glad to note that the magistrate's view of the swindle was a £5 fine. As it might be used raw for cake icing or marzipan, the result of ingesting this rubbish would probably bring about digestive troubles in young children.
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