1. Meet New Zealand requirements to export seafood
Find out the New Zealand requirements for export seafood. This is one step in a 5-step process.
Comply with New Zealand legislation and food standards
You need to meet labelling requirements and all relevant food standards and regulations. Legal requirements are set out in the:
- Animal Products Act 1999
- Food Act 2014
- Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code.
If you process fish and seafood in New Zealand, you must manage risk to make sure you're providing safe and suitable food. Your operating requirements depend on what type of seafood processing you do and where it's done.
In most cases, you'll need a registered and verified risk management programme (RMP). Secondary processors of seafood going to a market that does not require an export certificate can, in some cases, be done under either an RMP or a food control plan – but you're advised to check destination requirements. Limited processing fishing vessels need a regulated control scheme (RCS). Note that:
- seafood that is processed on an RMP vessel or a limited processing vessel can be exported directly. All other seafood must go through a land-based processor.
- bivalve molluscan shellfish (BMS) are a high-risk product and must be sourced from classified growing areas and processed for export in RMP premises.
- RMPs can be developed using codes of practice for processing of seafood product or rendering.
Follow the rules for your type of business
The processing section on this website has details about the requirements for different types of processors and operators.
Land-based processors and storage depots
Other processors and operators
Get your programme, scheme, or plan verified
After developing your risk management programme (RMP), you must register it and get it verified each year. MPI Verification Services verifies operators. You need to work with them to make sure your seafood complies with all of the requirements and that you're following your RMP or RCS.
Verifying a food control plan
If you operate under a food control plan, the verification process is different.
Exporters of fish and fish products need to meet the labelling and naming requirements of the export destination country. Fish products must also follow the labelling requirements set out in the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code.
- Browse the list of approved fish names [PDF, 762 KB]
- New Zealand list of scientific names of fish [PDF, 205 KB]
Storage and transport requirements
Stand-alone operators who store seafood before it is exported must meet specific requirements, depending on their market. Seafood also has specific storage temperature requirements, which are detailed in the Code of Practice (COP).
- Read about requirements for stores (cold and dry)
- Find out about temperature requirements in the COP
- Learn about the requirements for transport