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New Organisms Act in New Zealand

New Organisms Act in New Zealand


Since Technical Compliance Consultant Ltd (NZ) has in the past posted various articles, blogs and technical write-ups in relation to the Hazardous Substances as defined under the Hazardous Substances & New Organisms Act for the benefit of clients who found it difficult to comply with the all the rules and regulations, the HSNO consultant now concentrates on the New Organisms as
defined in the relevant enactment.


What is New Organism (according to HSNO Act)?

In the Kiwi country, a new organism is defined as:

  • An organism that has reached the country after 29 July 1998.
  • An organism that became extinct before July 29 1998.
  • An organism with approval to be in containment.
  • An organism with approval to be released with controls.
  • A genetically modified organism (GMO).
  • An organism that has been rooted out of the country (following specified eradication program with a stated goal or purpose of eliminating the organism from New Zealand).
  • An organism that was present in New Zealand before 29 July 1998 in contravention of the Animals Act 1967 or the Plants Act 1970 (except for the rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus (rabbit calicivirus)).
  • A risk species.


Approval needed for new organism

If your organism is a new organism, you need approval to import, develop, field test or release the organism in New Zealand. However, the New Organisms Team will help you in all the above issues.


New Organisms team

Basically, the task of the New Organisms team involves managing potential risks to the environment, the health and safety of people, Māori culture and traditions and the market economy from organisms that are new to the country without restricting New Zealand’s future potential for innovation.

Also, if you intend to import and release a garden plant or animal, or conduct research in a laboratory, the New Organisms team can help you process your application. Simultaneously, the team will advise you if an application is required, the type of application to be submitted, while guiding you through the application procedure.


If, on the other hand, you want to make a submission on a particular application but need more information, the team will help you with that process too. We always try to act in a transparent manner so that you are kept well informed of the application and submission progression.


Most of  the people enrolled in the New Organisms team are endowed with  scientific background. Our manager, senior advisors and consultants have experience in one or more fields relating to the risk assessment and management of new organisms. Post graduate research experience in the group includes researchers on molecular biology, immunology and pathology, genetics, mammalian physiology, ecology, conservation and biodiversity.


When a new organism needs reclassification

  • An organism can be reclassified when it’s formed a self-sustaining population and is not part of any eradication program conducted in New Zealand.
  • This rule is applicable to any animal, plant, or microbe that has arrived in New Zealand after the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms (HSNO) Act came into force on 29 July 1998.
  • Incidentally, the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) sought proposals to deregulate organisms that fit these criteria, so they can be reclassified as no longer new to New Zealand; the issue has since been settled in the land of the kiwis.



The topic concerning New Organism within the framework of the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act is equally, if not more  complex than the Hazardous substances discussed earlier. So, if any client needs further clarification or more elucidation, he or she is may feel free to contact TCC(NZ). We will respond to each and every quarry to the best of our abilities and zeal.



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