Scoop has an Ethical Paywall
Work smarter with a Pro licence Learn More

Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 

New Food Safety Rules For Registered Food Importers

In a change that will make imported food safer for consumers, strengthened requirements for all New Zealand food importers came into effect yesterday.

“The changes clarify the role and responsibilities of food importers when they bring food into New Zealand, to ensure that the food is safe and suitable for Kiwi consumers,” said New Zealand Food Safety deputy director-general Vincent Arbuckle.

“Most food importers won’t have to make any changes to comply with the new rules, some will have to make minor tweaks, and a small number will have to dramatically improve their procedures.

“We encourage all registered food importers to go and check the Ministry for Primary Industries website to make sure they are following the updated rules.”

The rule changes are detailed in a Food Notice that was issued in February 2023, and they provide detailed requirements for four key areas for food importers. The food importer must conduct a safety and suitability assessment before the food is brought to New Zealand, make sure the food is stored and transported in a safe way, keep proper records, and have a recall plan in case anything goes wrong.

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading

Are you getting our free newsletter?

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.

“Food importers have always had to ensure their food is safe and suitable; the new rules provide them with clarity on what they need to do to meet their responsibilities,” said Mr Arbuckle.

“We’re sure importers and retailers would like to avoid expensive recalls, like those seen recently with frozen berries and tahini, and complying with these new rules will help them to ensure their food is safe and minimise the likelihood of things going wrong.

“This means that consumers can be confident that all imported food is subject to consistently high safety standards.”

New Zealand Food Safety began consultations with the industry about the new rules in June 2022 and has been in regular contact with food importers about the strengthened rules, so that they have had plenty of time to prepare.

Food importers who fail to follow safety rules can face fines of up to $500,000 for a company, while an individual can be fined up to $100,000 and be jailed for up to two years.

Guidance for importers is available on the New Zealand Food Safety website, and food importers with any questions can contact New Zealand Food Safety on 0800 00 83 33 or info@mpi.govt.nz.

© Scoop Media

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 
GenPro: General Practices Begin Issuing Clause 14 Notices

GenPro has been copied into a rising number of Clause 14 notices issued since the NZNO lodged its Primary Practice Pay Equity Claim against General Practice employers in December 2023.More

SPADA: Screen Industry Unites For Streaming Platform Regulation & Intellectual Property Protections

In an unprecedented international collaboration, representatives of screen producing organisations from around the world have released a joint statement.More

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Join Our Free Newsletter

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.