29 July 1999
By FWi staff
JOYCE QUIN, who has succeeded Jeff Rooker as minister for food safety, is another member of Tony Blairs “Geordie Mafia”.
The MP for Gateshead East and Washington West is the third north-east politician to hold a post in the Ministry of Agriculture since Labour was elected in 1997.
Ms Quin comes to MAFF to join agriculture minister Nick Brown, MP for Newcastle East, who was preceded as minister by Newcastle-born Jack Cunningham.
Before becoming an MP in 1987, Ms Quin served as a Member of the European Parliament for Tyne and Wear between 1979 and 1989.
Despite her urban political background, during her time as an MEP, Ms Quin served on the European Parliamentary Committee for Agriculture.
She will have responsibility for food safety, food standards, meat hygiene, animal health, pesticides, veterinary medicines, plant health and MAFF research policy.
Ms Quin, the daughter of teachers, was educated at Whitley Bay Grammar School and Newcastle University, where she took a first-class degree in French.
Her second degree, an MSc in International Relations from the London School of Economics, could stand her in good stead for any European dealings she may have.
Her hobbies are listed in Dods Parliamentary Companion as local historian, walking, music, reading, cycling and playing Northumbrian pipes.
She succeeds Jeff Rooker, who was appointed Minister of State to the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food on 6 May 1997.
Mr Rooker will take up a ministerial position at the Department of Social Security.
A replacement for Lord Donoughue, who resigned yesterday, has yet to be named.