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Ministry of Food Flashes (clip 1)

How to use scarce food in wartime

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A series of wartime shorts illustrating the best uses of food and economies to be made. Food Flashes in this film include: "Give them their Vitamins, C?"; "Every four weeks" about dried eggs; "Salt Newfoundland cod 10d per pound"; and “Report Rats to your Town hall or Council Offices”. There is also a humorous shot of a child opening his fathers' beer bottle and getting pinched on the ear.

Questions & Activities


  • Why were people encouraged to save bread?
  • Why were vitamins given to children?
  • What items were recycled and why was this important?
  • Why did they expect there to be a shortage of fish?
  • Do we still have a problem with rats?


View all the Food Flashes on Scotland on Screen then create and prepare meals and recipes using rationed quantities and the same ingredients if possible.

Compare food campaigns from the past with current public information films.

Group activity looking at war time propaganda posters about saving and growing food: View all the Food Flashes on Scotland on Screen and discuss the different techniques used to convey the message. Create your own poster or short public information film about food or recycling.

Clip Details

Record Id 007-000-000-041-C
Resource Rights Holder Courtesy of the Imperial War Museum
Project Ref 0194a
Date 1940s
Genre Public Information
School Subject History, Health and Wellbeing
Subject Matter Home Front
Who Ministry of Food (sponsor)
Where Glasgow
Event World War II
Attributes Black and White, Sound
Clip Length 3:00
Film Length 03:00