Honey and bee product risk management programmes

If you process or store bee products for export, you must operate under a registered Risk Management Programme (RMP). Develop your Risk Management Programme using this template and Code of Practice (COP).

Who operates under an RMP

You must operate under a Risk Management Programme if you export to countries that require official assurances and if you are one of the following:

  • a secondary processor – that is, you extract, process, pack, or store bee products, or
  • an operator who stores bee products intended for export.

There are 2 RMPs which apply to bee product businesses:

  • Bee products RMP, which is used by secondary processors, and
  • RMP for stores (cold and dry), which is used by operators who only store bee products for export.

Developing and operating an RMP

An RMP is a written programme designed to help your operation manage the hazards associated with processing honey and bee products. It ensures that your products are fit for their intended purpose and meet the appropriate New Zealand animal product standards. Your RMP needs to be verified annually.

To be eligible for official assurances (export certificates), you must have an RMP registered with MPI in accordance with the Animal Products Act 1999. Most bee product RMPs can be based on the Code of Practice and template.

Some RMPs require evaluation before registration

If the activities you wish to carry out are not covered by the Code of Practice, your RMP needs to be evaluated before it can be registered.  

Getting your RMP verified

Verification checks are done by agencies recognised by MPI annually or more frequently if required. These checks make sure you are complying with your registered RMP and any other regulatory requirements.

For specific information about developing and registering your RMP, or about having it evaluated and verified, refer to:

Find out more about using official assurances for exporting:

Using the bee products COP to develop an RMP

If you are a secondary processor, a simpler way to create your RMP is to use the bee products COP. It guides you through the requirements for developing, registering, and implementing your RMP.

Evaluation of RMP not required

As long as you follow the template defined in the COP, you do not need to get an independent evaluation of your RMP. You can find out more about this in the waiver document.

Verifying your bee product RMP

Bee product RMPs are verified by MPI Verification Services or by AsureQuality. It is up to the RMP operator to choose which agency does their verification. A letter from the contracted agency must accompany applications to register an RMP.

Storing honey for export

If you are a beekeeper who intends to store your honey before it is exported using official assurances, you must

  • have the honey extracted by a contractor who operates under a verified RMP, and
  • operate under a verified RMP yourself.

Your RMP must comply with the requirements for dry stores. There is a code of practice for cold and dry stores to help you prepare your RMP. Find out more about cold and dry stores:

Other export requirements for stored honey

Find out more about requirements for storing honey intended for export:

When an RMP is not required

You do not require an RMP if you are

  • only a primary processor, meaning you just manage beehives or collect honey supers, propolis, or pollen, or
  • a secondary processor – someone who extracts, processes, packs, or stores honey or other bee products – who only sells their products on the New Zealand market.
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