Bivalve molluscan shellfish harvest operators

Find out about the requirements for bivalve molluscan shellfish (BMS) harvest operators, including around registration, vessel maintenance, labelling, and harvest declarations.

About BMS harvest operators

Harvest operators remove BMS from a shellfish growing area and move them to a harvest vessel, vehicle, or container.

They may move BMS for a variety of reasons, including to go into wet storage, for relay, or to go to retailers, wholesalers, or processors. 

What harvest operators need to do

If you're a BMS harvest operator, you must meet the BMS regulated control scheme (BMS RCS) requirements for:

  • vessel or vehicle design
  • operation
  • maintenance
  • sewage disposal.

You must also:

  • be registered with the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI)
  • ensure your harvest vessels and vehicles are listed with a unique identifier
  • meet requirements for labelling and harvest declarations of your product in the BMS RCS
  • follow harvesting and transport time and temperature protocols
  • ensure you have access to and follow the changes in status of growing areas.

Information on how to meet these requirements is in the Animal Products Notice: Regulated Control Scheme – Bivalve Molluscan Shellfish for Human Consumption [PDF, 874 KB]

Check these parts of the notice:

  • Part 11 – Harvesting BMS.
  • Part 13 – Transporting of BMS.
  • Part 17 – Health of personnel.

Registering as a BMS harvest operator

To register as a BMS harvest operator, complete application form AP47 and send it to us.

AP47: Bivalve Molluscan Shellfish Harvest Operator Registration [PDF, 859 KB]

AP47: Bivalve Molluscan Shellfish Harvest Operator Registration [DOC, 497 KB]

Contact details and costs for registering are on the form.

You must also include a verification report for each vessel or vehicle you use for harvesting BMS. Information on this is in the Animal Products Notice: Specifications for Products Intended for Human Consumption [PDF, 1.3 MB]

BMS harvest operators must renew their registration with MPI every 2 years.

Register of harvest operators

We have a list of registered commercial BMS harvest operators and their vessels.

List of bivalve molluscan shellfish harvest operators

Who to contact

If you have questions about working as a BMS harvest operator, email

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