London's Pulse: Medical Officer of Health reports 1848-1972

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Malden and Coombe 1949

[Report of the Medical Officer of Health for Malden & Coombe]

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Grades I and II give reasonable grounds to indicate defects in
manufacture or of handling calling for further investigation.

One naturally would desire all samples to reach Grades I or II and results of those taken since 1947 when the test was first officially put into operation show progressive improvement as the following table indicates:—

Total SamplesGradesGradeGrade
YearTakenI or II.%III.%IV.%

In April a letter was received from the Ministry of Food
stating that from November, 1948, additional quantities of
sugar and, in certain cases, fats had been made available to ice
cream manufacturers. To ensure that these materials were used
to the best advantage manufacturers wishing to avail themselves
of the additional supplies were required to sign an undertaking
that their ice cream would have a minimum fat content of 2½%.
This minimum does not constitute a legal standard, indeed it
must not be interpreted even as meaning that this figure is
regarded officially as a proper standard. Ten samples were
obtained during the year and sent to the Public Analyst and
copies of results were forwarded to the Ministry of Food, together
with the names of the manufacturers. All exceeded
the 2\%, the lowest containing 3.7% and the highest 10.7%.
The possibility of prescribing a legal standard of composition
for ice cream has been under consideration by the
Food Standards Committee and until that Committee has reported
to the Minister no action in this respect is contemplated.
In my opinion it should be a requirement for barrows, vans,
etc., from which ice cream is sold to be registered with the
local authority in the same manner as premises. At present
anyone can purchase ice cream from a wholesaler and sell it
from a van, barrow or stall, the only obligation being that he
must have his name and address legibly and conspicuously
displayed on such van, stall or barrow.
I have little to report in regard to this subject. Hardly
any complaints were received and laundry chimneys, which in
previous years have given rise to the majority of complaints,
appear to have caused little trouble. There is no doubt that
improvements both in plant and fuel which have taken place