JAMES PAICE has been appointed shadow food and farming minister after a surprise reshuffle by Conservative leader Michael Howard.

Writtle-educated Mr Paice is a former farm manager and is MP for south east Cambridgeshire.

He will replace John Whittingdale who has moved to become spokesman for culture, media and sport.

Mr Paice was an opposition spokesman for agriculture from 1997-2001 and Private Parliamentary Secretary for John Gummer from 1990-1993.

Married with two sons, his interests include shooting and conservation.