Selling veterinary medicines

Information about the requirements you must meet to sell or advertise a veterinary medicine in New Zealand.

On this page:

Selling exempt veterinary medicines

Certain veterinary medicines are exempt from registration and have no restrictions on their sale. Anyone can sell them.

Promoting or advertising exempt products must meet certain conditions. These conditions are listed in Schedule 2 of the Agricultural Compounds and Veterinary Medicines (ACVM) (Exemptions and Prohibited Substances) Regulations 2011:

Selling unrestricted registered veterinary medicines

There are no restrictions on the sale of unrestricted veterinary medicines. Anyone can sell them as long as they meet the specifications approved when they were registered.

Promoting or advertising unrestricted vet medicines must meet the conditions of registration.

Selling restricted registered veterinary medicines

Restricted veterinary medicines (RVMs) have extra restrictions on their sale, purchase, and use. You need authorisation to buy and use them.

Sellers must operate under an MPI-approved operating plan. This is the quality system, documents, and procedures used to:

  • control the sale of RVMs
  • comply with the conditions of registration (including checking authorisations for sale).

Note: You don't need an MPI-approved operating plan if you are a veterinarian and you only supply RVMs that vets in your practice authorise.

Promoting or advertising restricted vet medicines must meet the conditions of registration.

Prepare an operating plan and get it assessed

When preparing your operating plan, you it must meet the requirements outlined in the Guidance document: Operating plans for restricted veterinary medicine sellers. An easy way to do this is to use our operating plan template. You may use your own format, but assessment may take longer and cost more.

Email your operating plan for assessment to approvals@mpi.govt.nz

Approved operating plans

When approved, we'll place your details on our website list of sellers with approved operating plans.

If you need to know whether a company or individual that is not on this list can legally supply RVMs, contact us.

Selling hormonal growth promotants (HGPs)

HGPs are a type of restricted veterinary medicine, so they have the same registration conditions for selling.

You must have a seller's operating plan approved if you are a:

  • registrant (you registered the veterinary medicine)
  • importing agent or freight forwarder
  • distributor and wholesaler
  • New Zealand manufacturer
  • veterinary practice providing HGPs for vet authorisation from another practice.

Complete the operating plan template for sellers of HGPs. You may submit an operating plan in a different format, provided you meet ACVM expectations for sellers of HGPs. If you don't use the template, assessment may take longer and cost more.

Email your operating plan to approvals@mpi.govt.nz

Authorising purchase and use of RVMs (including HGPs)

All veterinarians with current practising certificates issued by the Veterinary Council of New Zealand (VCNZ) may authorise the purchase and use of RVMs.

A few registered products, such as vaccines to control exotic diseases, may be used or sold under an MPI-approved operating plan.

Vet operating instructions

This document provides guidelines for issuing robust veterinary operating instructions for non-vets to use for:

  • RVMs (including for velvet antler removal), or
  • veterinary medicines that are exempt from registration subject to veterinary control.

Veterinary operating instructions guidelines [PDF, 231 KB]

Promoting or advertising registered vet medicines

For both restricted and unrestricted vet medicines, you must meet the conditions of registration – these are listed in the ACVM product register.

For general information about advertising and promotion, read the Advertising guidelines for products registered under the ACVM Act.

Last reviewed:
Has this been useful? Give us your feedback