Equivalence Tracker: New Zealand

Regulatory Status

New Zealand does not regulate its domestic organic agriculture and markets.  For imports, organic claims are enforced under a general consumer protection law, the Fair Trading Act 1986.

For exports, the Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) administers a voluntary Official Organic Assurance Program (OOAP) for organic products exported to specific regulating countries, namely, China, European Union, Japan, Switzerland, Taiwan and the United States.  Organic trade with Australia is covered under a Trans-Tasman Mutual Recognition Agreement.

Competent Authority

New Zealand Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI)


Equivalence Arrangements

Trade Partner:    China 
Type:  Bilateral equivalence arrangement
Year in effect:Not yet implemented
Product Scope:Unprocessed and processed products of plant and animal origin. Includes wine.   Does not include apiculture or aquaculture
Country of origin:Products, including ingredients in process products, must have been
produced in New Zealand or China.
Exceptions:  None 
 For imports: The bilateral arrangement acknowledges that the products produced under Chinese organic regulations are deemed to meet New Zealand’s Fair Trading Act, as New Zealand does not have a domestic organic regulation.

For exports:  Exports would operate under the OOAP, administered by the MPI.  


Trade Partner:   European Union
Type:  Unilateral equivalence arrangement for imports to the European Union 
Year in effect:1997
Product Scope:Unprocessed and processed agricultural products of plant and animal origin.  Includes wine.  Excluded aquaculture.
Country of origin:Must have been produced in New Zealand, and/or processed in New Zealand with ingredients produced or imported from:
  • the EU;
  • countries recognized by the EU as having equivalent organic regulations;
  • countries recognized by the MPI as having equivalent organic rules (providing that these ingredients do not exceed 5% of product). 
Exceptions:  None 

Relevant links: 


Trade Partner:   Japan
Type:  Unilateral equivalence arrangement for imports by Japan
Year in effect:n/a
Product Scope:Unprocessed and processed products of plant origin.
Country of originProduct must have been produced and/or processed in New Zealand. 
Exceptions:  None:
  • use of ethylene is restricted to ripening kiwifruit and banana;
  • prohibited inputs are copper octanoate, hydroxypropyl methyl cellulose and helium.

Relevant Links: 


Trade Partner:   Taiwan 
Type:  Unilateral equivalence for purpose of import by Taiwan
Year in effect:2009
Product Scope:Unprocessed and processed products of plant and animal origin.
Country of origin:Products must have been produced and processed in New Zealand.
Exceptions:  For import: 
  • Animal products produced from animals treated with antibiotics or  systemic analgesics e.g. Lidocaine,  Procaine, may not be exported to Taiwan 
  • Food additives and processing aids much comply with Taiwanese lists. 
  • sulfur dioxide content of wine must not exceed 100 mg. per liter.

Relevant links: 


Trade Partner:   United States
 New Zealand has an arrangement with the United States to oversee certification in New Zealand to the requirements of the US National Organic Program (NOP).  Under this arrangement, the United States recognizes that New Zealand’s control system for conformity assessment to organic production requirements is equivalent to its own.


Overview and country-specific details of equivalence arrangements between governments