The now huge Government re-shuffle in Westminster has seen George Eustice take over from Theresa Villiers as environment secretary.

Ms Villiers was widely tipped to be part of the re-shuffle, having been seen as being 'uncomfortable' in her role as environment secretary.

Mr Eustice had previously been a junior minister in the same department. He is the Conservative MP for Camborne and Redruth, and has been an MP continuously since May, 2010.

His background is a family fruit farm near Hayle, in Cornwall.

Farmers should, at least, be cheered by the fact that his agricultural background will be a plus point and that he has shown he understands the needs, wants and frustrations of farmers in his limited role so far.

This new job propels him into a greater influence and as a fruit farmer he should understand the importance of migrant labour in the seasonal parts of agriculture.

Also quoted in the re-shuffle, Alister Jack remains as Secretary of State from Scotland, having only been appointed to the role in mid-2019.

Speaking from Westminster, where he had been giving evidence on the Agriculture Bill, Director of Policy for NFU Scotland, Jonnie Hall, said: “Having just given evidence to a committee attended by George Eustice, it was little surprise to those in the committee room when he was called away to Downing Street during the session.

“We welcome the appointment of Mr Eustice.  While he is the seventh Secretary of State at Defra since the Conservatives resumed office in May, 2010, the many years he has spent as Agricultural minister at Defra have seen NFU Scotland build up a strong relationship with him in that capacity.

“In his role as Secretary of State, we would be keen to quickly engage on the great number of pressing issues we have that will benefit both Scottish and UK farming sectors and we will extend an invite for the Secretary of State to visit Scotland at his earliest convenience in the next few days.

“As we approach vital trade negotiations, we would want to see the Secretary of State deliver on his predecessors’ reassurances around upholding the high standards held across our farming sectors and support our calls for the establishment of Standards commission, as accepted by Michael Gove when he held the Defra post.

“We also need to nail down the detail on the future multi-annual funding for agriculture, and Scotland’s share of that, and ensure that commonly agreed regulatory frameworks are put in place to effectively preserve the integrity of the internal UK market.”