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Tuesday, 3 May 1994
Page: 132

(Question No. 1229)


Senator Calvert asked the Minister for Defence, upon notice, on 16 March 1994:

  (1) How many eating plates were supplied by Australian Fine China for $84 449 in February 1994.

  (2) What were the costs of supplying cutlery, crockery and glassware to the Defence Forces for the 1991-92 and 1992-93 financial years and the 1993-94 financial year to date.

  (3) What is the average life of cutlery, crockery and glassware in the Defence Forces.

  (4) What amount of cutlery, crockery and glassware was purchased in the aforementioned financial years.

  (5) Does any of the cutlery, crockery and glassware have any special or unique qualities that make its use specific to the Defence Forces.

  (6) Is all of the cutlery, crockery and glassware Australian made; if not, why not.


Senator Robert Ray —The answer to the honourable senator's question is as follows:

  (1) 11 000.

  (2) Costs to supply crockery, cutlery and glassware over the last three financial years are:

  (a) FY91/92—$0.648M,

  (b) FY92/93—$0.26M, and

  (c) FY93/94 (To date)—$0.38M.

  (3) No average life span is specified for crockery and glassware as these items are subject to breakages through handling. Cutlery is estimated to have a life span of 7 years with normal wear and tear.

  (4) Amounts purchased in each Financial Year, by quantity and type, were:

  (a) Cutlery

  (i) 91/92: 3 000 fruit forks; 47 000 table forks; 3 000 cheese knives; 14 000 soup spoons; 3 500 fish knives; 1 550 sugar spoons; 5 100 seafood spoons; 20 000 tea spoons; 35 000 table knives; 25 000 dessert spoons; 400 carving knives; and 100 table spoons.

  (ii) 92/93: 2 000 large spoons; 4 500 fish knives; 4 000 fruit spoons; 3 700 tea spoons; 2 000 table spoons; 9 000 table knives; and 2 000 demitasse spoons.

(iii) 93/94: 1 100 table spoons; 1 300 fruit forks; 20 000 table forks; 500 food service spoons; and 20 000 steak knives.

  (b) Crockery and glassware:

  (i) 91/92: 27 700 saucers; 8 700 dessert bowls; 6 430 food platters; 11 200 bread and butter plates; 2 300 salad bowls; and 8 500 entree plates.

  (ii) 92/93: 3 100 soup bowls; 4 500 salad bowls; 580 food platters; 7 000 port goblets; 3 000 sherry goblets; 11 320) jugs; 1 300 saucers; and 5 000 dinner plates.

(iii) 93/94: 16 032 port goblets; 1 500 food platters; 7 000 entree plates; 4 300 breakfast cups; 20 016 glasses; 9 984 champagne goblets; 2 016 hi-ball tumblers; 11 000 dinner plates; 1 400 wine carafes; 6 048 spirit tumblers; 5 040 champagne flutes; 700 casserole dishes; and 20 016 drinking mugs.

  (5) Yes, all items have the badged Coat of Arms on them.

  (6) No. Crockery is manufactured in Australia, whereas cutlery and glassware is from overseas. All items were selected following deliberations by the Tri-Service Catering Committee, using the criterion of best value for money.