George Eustice promoted as Defra Secretary

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George Eustice arrives at the Cabinet Office in London, Britain, February 13, 2020. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls

George Eustice has been appointed as the new Defra Secratary in the cabinet reshuffle on 13 February.

Eustice, previously a minister in the department, replaces his former boss Theresa Villiers, who has been sacked in the reshuffle.

Coming from a farming background, his family still run a fruit farm, restaurant and farm shop in Cornwall.

First elected in 2010, the Camborne and Redruth MP served on the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee and has been a minister in the Defra since 2013, barring for a brief period in 2019 when he quit over Brexit concerns.

The food industry welcomed the appointment, saying Eustice has been a “fantastic advocate” for the UK’s food and drink manufacturers.

“We are pleased he will bring a deep understanding of the sector and our priorities to the role,” said Ian Wright, chief executive of the Food and Drink Federation.

“The FDF and our members look forward to continuing our close work together to maximise the industry’s potential through trade, exporting, skills and sustainable growth.”