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Thursday, 7 August 1930

Senator COOPER (Queensland) (6:43 AM) . - I direct the attention of the Minister to the fact that self-raising flour, which is not a luxury but a commodity used extensively in every household, is to be subject to this tax. When the measure is in committee it is my intention to move an amendment to have this product placed on the exempted list. Fully 94 per cent, of the flour used in the average Queensland home is of the self-raising variety, and if its cost is increased it will be necessary for housewives to resort to the old method of mixing carbonate of soda and cream of tartar with the ordinary flour.

Senator Rae - Self-raising flour is used only by those who do not wish to go to the trouble of mixing the commodities mentioned.

Senator COOPER - Self-raising flour is considered to be a superior product; because it is scientifically mixed, it is considered to be more satisfactory for cooking purposes. The self-raising product is used very extensively in the country by persons who are already heavily taxed, and I sincerely trust that the Government will agree to the amendment which I intend to move. I agree with the opinion expressed by the Assistant Minister (Senator Barnes) that every section of the community should bear its burden of taxation, and endeavour to assist the country out of its present financial difficulties. I consider, however, that the primary producers are at present bearing more than their share of taxation, and I strongly protest against any further imposition upon them.

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