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Food and Environment Research Agency

Volume 706: debated on Thursday 18 December 2008


My honourable friend the then Minister for Marine Landscape and Rural Affairs (Jonathan Shaw) announced on 26 March 2008 the creation of a new Defra executive agency to be vested on 1 April 2009. The agency will be formed from merging the Central Science Laboratory (CSL), the Plant Health Division (PHD)/Plant Health and Seeds Inspectorate (PHSI) and the Plant Variety Rights Office and Seeds Division (PVS). He explained that the new science agency would operate in shadow form from 1 April 2008.

I am pleased to announce that the new agency will be called the Food and Environment Research Agency. The role of the new agency is to provide robust evidence, rigorous analysis and professional advice to government, international organisations and the private sector, in order to support and develop a sustainable food chain, a healthy natural environment, and to protect the global community from biological and chemical risks. The Food and Environment Research Agency will be a key organisation within the Government’s strategic science capability and in supporting Defra’s strategic priorities to:

secure a healthy natural environment for us all and deal with environmental risks;

promote a sustainable, low-carbon and resource-efficient economy; and

ensure a thriving farming sector and a sustainable, healthy and secure food supply.