I am delighted to have been appointed by the Prime Minister as her new Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, and am looking forward to the opportunity ahead of us as we leave the EU to make a huge success of our superb fishing, farming and agri-food sectors.
I pay tribute to the excellent work that my predecessor has done in the role, and wish Liz Truss all the very best in her new position as Chief Secretary to the Treasury.
I will be supported by a strong Ministerial team – George Eustice, Tiz Coffey and John Gardiner – and I am excited by the work we are going to do together. From ensuring that our fishermen and farmers have the support they need to transition out of the EU to working to protect our beautiful environment both here at home and abroad, taking on this new role as Environment Secretary is an honour. Coming from a family with a rural background, and representing a beautiful area of the country in South Northants, I am looking forward to working with food producers and other stakeholders about how we can improve on this vital part of our economy as well as on our environment.
I come into the role with two clear ambitions: to make a resounding success of our world-leading food and farming industry; producing more, selling more, and exporting more of our Great British food. Second, to ensure we become the first generation to leave the environment in a better state than we found it.
Finally, let me thank my superb Private Office in the former Department of Energy and Climate Change for their hard-work during my time as Energy Minister. We did some vital work together, and I am so grateful for their help and support in the department. I would also like to wish my good friend, Amber Rudd, all the very best as she takes on her new role as Home Secretary.