Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

We are the UK government department responsible for safeguarding our natural environment, supporting our world-leading food and farming industry, and sustaining a thriving rural economy. Our broad remit means we play a major role in people’s day-to-day life, from the food we eat, and the air we breathe, to the water we drink.


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Secretary of State

George Eustice MP
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Parliamentary Under-Secretaries of State
Victoria Prentis MP
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
Rebecca Pow MP
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
Shadow Ministers
Shadow Secretaries
Luke Pollard (Labour (Co-op))
Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Deidre Brock (Scottish National Party)
Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
Shadow Ministers
Stephanie Peacock (Labour)
Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
Lloyd Russell-Moyle (Labour (Co-op))
Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
Daniel Zeichner (Labour)
Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)

Latest News (from Department Twitter Feed)

4 Jul 2020, 1:36 p.m.
Students, can you #PickforBritain this summer? 👨‍🌾👩‍🌾 👛 Earn some extra money 🍓 Spend some time outdoors 👉 If you’re interested, check https://t.co/KeB9ukY7Oq regularly as more jobs will be available throughout the summer. https://t.co/dXh9J4iujA - Link
4 Jul 2020, 8:53 a.m.
As more places re-open from today, play your part when spending time outdoors: ✅ Plan ahead - bins aren't always available outside ✅ Take a bag for your rubbish to take home with you to throw away or recycle ❌ Don't leave rubbish next to a full bin #StayAlert #Coronavirus https://t.co/Afe6v9GI84 - Link
View All Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Tweets

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Commons Appearances

Oral Answers to Questions is a regularly scheduled appearance where the Secretary of State and junior minister will answer at the Dispatch Box questions from backbench MPs

Other Commons Chamber appearances can be:
  • Urgent Questions where the Speaker has selected a question to which a Minister must reply that day
  • Adjornment Debates a 30 minute debate attended by a Minister that concludes the day in Parliament.
  • Oral Statements informing the Commons of a significant development, where backbench MP's can then question the Minister making the statement.

Westminster Hall debates are performed in response to backbench MPs or e-petitions asking for a Minister to address a detailed issue

Written Statements are made when a current event is not sufficiently significant to require an Oral Statement, but the House is required to be informed.

Most Recent Commons Appearances by Category
Date Type Title
Jun. 25 Oral Questions Oral Answers to Questions
Jun. 25 Topical Questions Topical Questions
May. 22 Urgent Questions Transport Emissions: Urban Areas
Apr. 29 Written Statements Maximum Sustainability Yield: UK-relevant Quota Stock Species
Mar. 16 Westminster Hall Caging of Farm Animals
Jun. 24 Adjournment Debate Protection of UK Food Standards
View All Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Commons Contibutions

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs - Bills and Acts in the Current Session

Title Last Event Next Event Date Last Updated
Direct Payments to Farmers (Legislative Continuity) Act 2020 Royal Assent (Minutes of Proceedings) 30 January, 2020 31 Jan 2020, 9:30 a.m.
To make provision for the incorporation of the Direct Payments Regulation into domestic law; for enabling an increase in the total maximum amount of direct payments under that Regulation; and for connected purposes.

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs - Laid Secondary Legislation

Dates Department Title Type
Laid
25 Jun 2020
In Force
16 Jul 2020
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Wine (Amendment) Regulations 2020
Parliamentary Status - Legislation
Made negative procedure
This instrument amends the Wine Regulations 2011 (S.I. 2011/2936) in order to reflect the repeal of Commission Regulation (EC) No 606/2009 by Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2019/934 and its replacement with both that Regulation and Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2019/935.
Laid
18 Jun 2020
In Force
Not stated
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Environment (Amendment etc.) (EU Exit) (Amendment) (England and Wales) Regulations 2020
Parliamentary Status - Legislation
Made negative procedure
None
View All Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Secondary Legislation

Petitions addressed by Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Current Signatures Final Signatures Title Petition Deadline
247,048
Petition Closed

Ban the use of all non-recyclable and unsustainable food packaging

Gov Responded - 18 Jun 2019 Debated on - 24 Jun 2019
5 Jun 2019
closed 1 year, 1 month ago

Today the Earth is at a crisis point due to our plastic consumption, and as a result, people in the UK are more willing than ever to engage in recycling. Yet so much food packaging remains completely, frustratingly unrecyclable. Let's aim for the UK to lead the world with a 100% recycling rate.

186,226
Petition Closed

Reject calls to add Staffordshire Bull Terriers to the Dangerous Dogs Act

Gov Responded - 5 Jul 2018 Debated on - 16 Jul 2018
22 Dec 2018
closed 1 year, 6 months ago

PETA, an organisation that is meant to be dedicated to protecting animals, has proposed to the UK government that it should add Staffordshire Bull Terriers to the dangerous dogs act, effectively banning them outright. Breed Specific Legislation is not the solution to the problem of dog attacks.

148,248
Petition Closed

Ban the sale of puppies by pet shops & all commercial 3rd party dealers.

Gov Responded - 20 Mar 2018 Debated on - 21 May 2018
1 Sep 2018
closed 1 year, 10 months ago

Removing puppies for sale from litter & mum often creates sick, traumatised, dysfunctional dogs. Puppies should be seen with their mum & transporting them to a different place for sale harms welfare. Regulating commercial 3rd party sales is ineffective to prevent harm & a ban is therefore necessary.

View All Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Petitions

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee Home Page

Select Committees are a formally established cross-party group of backbench MPs tasked with holding a Government department to account.

At any time there will be number of ongoing investigations into the work of the Department, or issues which fall within the oversight of the Department. Witnesses can be summoned from within the Government and outside to assist in these inquiries, and the Select Committee will occasionally publish formal reports of their findings.


Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Publications


Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Written Questions

Written Questions are submitted by Members of Parliament and the House of Lords to receive information or updates from a Department.

Departments are required to respond in a timely fashion and provide a response or requested information. Written Questions can compel detailed and specific information to be produced, and are frequently used as the source of news stories about the work of a Department.

Latest Written Question
Date Title Questioner
3 Jul 2020, 4 p.m. Food: Wholesale Trade Martin Docherty-Hughes

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps he is taking to support the wholesale sector and safeguard food supplies to schools, care homes, hospitals and other critical public service infrastructure.

Answer (Victoria Prentis)

The Chancellor of the Exchequer has announced a range of temporary financial support to the wholesale sector, a key supplier of food to critical public service organisations, to ensure its ongoing viability through this difficult period. Wholesalers are eligible for a number of schemes, including: the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS), the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme to help keep millions of people in employment and the Discretionary Grant Fund for small and micro businesses that are not eligible for other grant schemes.

In addition to this, Defra has been working with the charity sector through the Food Charity Grant Scheme which gives charities up to £100,000 in grant funding to purchase food to support the most economically vulnerable. Through this scheme, Defra has encouraged charities that do not have established suppliers to purchase stock from wholesalers and local producers, both to support the sector and to reduce waste.

A range of Government departments hold responsibility for public sector food provision for specific sectors including schools, care homes, hospitals and prisons. My department is working closely with officials from the Department for Education, the Department of Health and Social Care, the Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of Defence to support them in making arrangements with their suppliers to ensure food supply continues to these public sector institutions.

View All Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Written Question