UK Ministers have appointed Sarah Pumfrett as independent board member of the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) and chairman of its Audit and Risk Assurance Committee (ARAC).

Sarah Pumfrett took up her role from April 1, 2020, for a three-year term after Will Lifford completed his term in office at the end of March.

This is a Ministerial appointment, made by the Secretary of State for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and Ministers in the Scottish Government and Welsh Government and Northern Ireland Executive.

Sarah Pumfrett is a chartered certified accountant (ACCA), chartered internal auditor (CMIIA) and specialist member of the Institute of Risk Management (SIRM).

Having begun her career with Aberdeenshire Council, she gained extensive experience as an internal auditor in the oil industry.

Her interest in farming stems from a longstanding connection to agriculture which includes running a 16ac smallholding as a “hobby croft” – home to Exmoor ponies, Bagot goats and chickens.

AHDB chairman Nicholas Saphir said: “Sarah has a vast amount of finance and audit experience and I’m delighted to welcome her to the AHDB Board. Both I and the rest of the Board look forward to working with her.

“I would also like to thank Will Lifford for all his work, and particularly, his valuable contribution to the oversight of audit and risk assurance at AHDB over the last seven years.”

Ms. Pumfrett said: “Joining the AHDB at such a defining time for the UK agriculture and horticulture sector is very exciting. I’m thoroughly looking forward to helping AHDB meet the challenges and make the most of the opportunities that lie ahead.”

This appointment is governed by the Cabinet Office’s Governance Code on Public Appointments, and is made on merit.

In accordance with the original Nolan recommendations, appointees’ political activity (if any declared) have to be made public. As part of the appointment process, the appointee did not declare any political activity.

Sarah Pumfrett will receive a non-pensionable remuneration of £11,100/year, based on a minimum time commitment of 36 days per year. Reasonable travel expenses are also paid.