Matt Hancock compared making the Covid-19 vaccine to making your own bread.
He told Commons, “The rate-limiting factor is the amount of juice actually available, the actual vaccine being vaccinated.
“What is not made like a chemical is effective … it’s a biological product.
“It’s a bit like baking your own bread, Mrs Deputy Spokesperson. I don’t know if you do, but I do sometimes, and it’s a bit like yeast making and growing.
“It’s probably the best way to think about it, it’s a complicated and difficult task and … that’s the rate limiting factor.
“I pay tribute to those involved in the manufacturing process.”
Hancock’s comments come just hours after Boris Johnson said the easing of England’s third national lockdown will be “gradual”.
He warned that there would not be a “big bang” in which all restrictions on freedoms would be removed at once.
After the Commons recalled from the Christmas break, Mr Johnson addressed MPs, saying there is now a race between spreading the virus and delivering vaccines to the most vulnerable.
Mr Johnson said, “Our emergence from the lockdown cocoon will not be a big bang, it will be a gradual unpacking.”
The regulations run until March 31st, “not because we assume that the full national lockdown will continue until then, but to enable a steady, controlled and evidence-based transition through the levels on a regional basis”.
The Prime Minister told MPs that the measures should be “continuously reviewed” with a legal obligation to review them every two weeks and a legal obligation to remove them when they are no longer needed.
“We are in a difficult final phase that is only made more difficult by the new variant,” said Johnson.
“After last year’s marathon, we’re actually in a sprint, a race to vaccinate the vulnerable faster than the virus can reach them.
“Every needle in every arm makes a difference.”