Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food
The Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAFF) was a United Kingdom government department created by the Board of Agriculture Act. In 1955 with the addition of responsibilities for the British food industry to the existing responsibilities for agriculture and the fishing industry, it was given this name, which lasted until the Ministry was dissolved in 2002, at which point responsibilities had merged with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).
Until the Food Standards Agency was created, it was responsible for both food production and food safety, which was seen by some to give rise to a conflict of interest. MAFF was widely criticised for its handling of the outbreak of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy, or Mad Cow Disease, and later the outbreak of foot and mouth disease in 2001.
It was merged with the part of the Department for Environment, Transport and the Regions that dealt with the environment to create Defra in 2001 and MAFF was formally dissolved in 2002.