Importing Animals and Animal Products
Live animals must meet specific conditions to enter New Zealand. These will depend on the type of animal and country of origin. General information for importing live animals, germplasm and relevant definitions can be found on the MPI website.
Entry conditions are described in the appropriate Import Health Standard (IHS) for the animal you wish to import. Importation is not possible if there is no import health standard for that animal. Please search existing standards to find out if an Import Health Standard exists for the animal you intend to import (and from the relevant country). You can apply for an IHS if one doesn’t exist using one of the following forms:
- Request for development of an import health standard (animal products) PDF (101 KB) MSWord (249 KB)
- Request for development of an import health standard (live animals and germplasm) PDF (98 KB) MSWord (255 KB)
Applications are assessed and prioritised against specific criteria. You may want to review IHS’s that are currently under consultation or review current Risk Analysis. Additionally, if there is no HIS for the animal/product you wish to import, you may want to apply for the development of an Import Health Standard.
A Permit to Import may be required and animals may have to complete Post Arrival Quarantine (PAQ) at a MPI approved quarantine facility. You must contact one of these quarantine facilities and reserve a space for your animal(s) if PAQ is required. The quarantine facility will provide a confirmation letter that must be included with your permit application. Permit to import application forms can also be downloaded from the appropriate Import Health Standard’s page.
Some animals may be prohibited due to their protected status (see What you must declare-Animals). Failing to declare restricted goods could result in the owner of the goods being fined up to $100,000 or a company being fined up to $200,000.
If you intend to import a cat or dog, please read Entering New Zealand, Animals and Animal Products, Your Pets.
Reporting obligations for owners of imported cattle, buffalo, sheep, goats and deer or embryos and semen from these animals.
Learn more about the obligations for owners of imported cattle, buffalo, sheep, goats and deer or call the Imported Animal Freephone on 0800 623 555.
Please call the Imported Animal Freephone within seven days if:
- The animal dies of injury or of old age
- You home-kill the animal
- You send the animal to a slaughterhouse
- You sell the animal or otherwise change ownership
- The animal is missing
- A MPI ear tag is lost or becomes illegible
- Your contact details change
- The location of the animal changes
It is possible to import animal medication but you will need approval from the Agricultural Compounds and Veterinary Medicines Group . Please view the protocol for accompanied animals entering New Zealand that require medication.
Animal products, including meat, eggs and dairy products and biological products of animal origin, microorganisms and cell cultures
For information about private consignments of meat products see the following Import Health Standard for Specified Foods Containing Animal Products. You may also want to search the Import Health Standards for a particular product you want to import. An inspection may be required to decide whether or not the product is eligible for importation.
For information on importing biological products of animal origin, microorganisms and cell cultures see Importing Biological Products of Animal Origin, Microorganisms and Cell Cultures
The fee for processing a permit application is $NZ166.62 (GST inclusive). Options for payment are included on the permit application form.
Any other fees applying to the importation of animals are set out in the Biosecurity (Costs) Regulations 2010 (68 KB)
Page last updated: 4 February 2013