Frequently asked questions in Alert Level 2
Find answers to the latest questions about working within Alert Level 2 restrictions.
Who can operate under Alert Level 2 in the primary sector?
Under Alert Level 2, all primary sector businesses will be able to operate, in a safe way, including those that operated at level 3 and 4.
What will be expected of businesses?
Under Alert Level 2 all businesses may open, but physical distancing applies, along with other appropriate public health requirements (e.g. physical distancing, and having contact tracing registers).
All businesses are encouraged to use alternative ways of working if possible. Business premises can open for staff and customers.
More information is available at Worksafe.
What about scheduled food verification?
It’s very important that food verification services continue during the COVID-19 response to make sure food safety is managed properly.
We have set up a Remote Check System of Food Act 2014 businesses – that will continue during Level 2 – as an interim measure until on-site verifications resume. This means that Food Act verifiers, who have completed the necessary Remote Check training, can complete scheduled verifications with food businesses off-site, via a phone call or using online technology such as Skype.
For more information, verifiers can visit the Food Verifiers Academy. Food businesses owners/managers can contact their verifier or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Can I re-open or make changes to my food business in Alert Level 2?
Yes. However, there are requirements food businesses must follow to ensure their food is safe and suitable for consumers.
To help businesses get back up and running, and minimise the spread of COVID-19, we’ve made it easier to add key operations to businesses, and have detailed online information about re-opening food businesses.
To save businesses' time and money, we’ve waived some fees and charges so they can add on key operations like delivery, transport, and making chilled/frozen food. There’s a new pre-evaluated template for businesses (including egg producers, honey/dairy processors, and dual operator butchers) wanting to add on packaging, labelling and delivery.
What safety assurances does MPI need?
Under Alert Level 2, all businesses can resume operations and interact with the public in a safe way. This includes contact tracing and staying 2 metres away from people you don’t know in public, and 1 metre in workplaces.
Businesses do not need to register with MPI.
How long will Alert Level 2 stay in place?
The Government will determine how long New Zealand will stay under Alert Level 2.
When can I hire new employees?
You can hire employees at any alert level. You can carry out in-person interviews at Alert Levels 2. You must follow social distancing guidelines and stay 2 metres away from people you don’t know in public.
Can I travel for work?
At Alert Level 2, you can travel for work anywhere in New Zealand. Take appropriate safety measures like keeping a record of where you stop and who you have come into contact with.
When can I meet with new or existing clients?
You can meet clients in person at Alert Level 2. You must follow social distancing guidelines and stay 2 metres away from people you don't know in public.
Can cellar door and gate sales be held during Alert Level 2?
Yes, sales of primary produce direct to consumers can be done with appropriate measures that prevent the spread of COVID-19. The key focus at Alert Level 2 is on maintaining social distancing and contact tracing. Customers will be allowed on the premises of all businesses but appropriate safety measures must be followed.
Can independent butchers, bakeries and greengrocers operate?
Yes, all primary industries and support services can operate with appropriate measures that prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The key focus at Alert Level 2 is on maintaining social distancing and contact tracing. Customers will be allowed on the premises of all businesses.
What is happening with Moving Day?
The Ministry for Primary Industries, on advice from the Ministry of Health and the Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment, has determined that Moving Day can proceed under any alert level. This farm practice is essential to the running of the country’s dairy industry.
At Alert Level 2, the movement of people, livestock, chattels and farm equipment around New Zealand is permitted without restriction but must be done in a safe way, with farmers required to take appropriate safety measures like keeping a record of where they stop and who they have come into contact with.
Moving Day has always had strict measures in place to ensure the safety and wellbeing of livestock and staff, and we have full confidence in our primary sector that everything will be done to ensure Moving Day goes ahead as smoothly as possible.
Can I fish recreationally?
Yes, recreational and other non-commercial fishing can be undertaken at Alert Level 2, including from a boat. You must follow hygiene and social distancing guidelines, staying 2 metres away from people you don’t know in public.
Fisheries rules and restrictions are still in place. People can find out about the fishing rules for their region on our website or by downloading the fishing app.
Our fishery officers will be patrolling throughout NZ to protect our fisheries. They will do this in a way that keeps themselves and others safe.
You can call us on 0800 4 POACHER if you see anyone breaking the fishing rules.