Law Library Stacks

Back to Restrictions on Genetically Modified Organisms

The importation, development, testing, and release of genetically modified organisms are strictly regulated in New Zealand.  Such activities must be approved by the Environmental Protection Authority, which is required to take into account various factors related to the potential risks and benefits of the proposal.  These include environmental, economic, social, cultural, and public health considerations.  Public notification of applications is generally required under the legislation.

Genetic modification techniques have been approved for use in research involving both plants and animals.  These projects are subject to various controls and are conducted in contained research facilities.  The relevant legislation provides for inspections to be conducted as well as including other enforcement powers.  Criminal and civil penalties may be applied in relation to breaches of the legislation, and offenders may be ordered to mitigate or remedy any adverse effect on people or the environment.

There are currently no genetically modified commercial crops in New Zealand, and no fresh produce or meat sold that has been genetically modified.  Imported food and ingredients derived from GMOs must be approved by a food safety authority and those that are approved for use must be clearly labeled on food packaging. 

The development and use of GMOs is a topic that has generated considerable debate and controversy in New Zealand.  The current regulatory approach is largely based on the findings and recommendations of the Royal Commission on Genetic Modification that were released in 2001.  The government’s decision to proceed cautiously with allowing for genetic modification was met with public demonstrations and there continue to be challenges to various proposals and calls for New Zealand to be “GM free.”

I.  Introduction

According to the United States Department of Agriculture, New Zealand “maintains one of the most comprehensive and rigorous approval regimes for genetically modified organisms in the world.”[1]  Genetic modification techniques have been approved for use in specific field research in contained outdoor environments, for example in relation to pest control, pharmaceutical research, and the enhancement of the production capacity of crops and animals.[2]  However, there have not yet been any applications for the release of resulting products.  An imported, genetically engineered equine influenza vaccination is currently the only product containing live modified organisms that has been approved for use in the country.[3]  There are no genetically modified commercial crops being grown in New Zealand at this time, and no fresh produce or meat sold that is genetically modified.[4]  Processed food containing imported, genetically modified ingredients are assessed for safety and must comply with labeling requirements.[5] 

The importation, development, field testing, and release of “new organisms,” including genetically modified organisms (GMOs), are regulated by the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996 (HSNO Act).[6]  Various aspects of the HSNO Act relating to GMOs were incorporated through amending legislation that was passed in 2003, including provisions relating to the conditional release of new organisms, a civil liability and pecuniary penalties regime, as well as a requirement to establish an advisory committee to inform decision makers about matters of concern to the Māori people.[7]  The amendments resulted from the government’s response[8] to the report of a Royal Commission on Genetic Modification, which was established in 2000 and completed its report in July 2001.[9]  The major conclusion of the Royal Commission was that New Zealand should proceed cautiously with genetic modification, but not completely “close the door” to it.[10] 

Although there is also some discussion in the country about the potential impact of the strict controls on GMOs on scientific and economic development,[11] “there have been no official changes to the heavily regulated and cautious policy settings operated by the New Zealand Government in relation to products derived from biotechnology.”[12]

Back to Top

II.  Public and Scholarly Opinion

More than 10,000 written submissions from organizations and members of the public were received as part of the Royal Commission process in the early 2000s.[13]  During the process, a two-year moratorium on applications to release GMOs was in effect.[14]  The moratorium expired on October 29, 2003, when the HSNO Act amendments relating to GMOs came into force.[15]  Protesters held marches and rallies against the lifting of the moratorium, while the biotechnology industry and farmers welcomed the move.[16]

The Royal Commission recommended the establishment of a Bioethics Council to “provide advice and promote ongoing dialogue among New Zealanders” regarding the cultural, ethical, and spiritual aspects of biotechnology.[17]  This body began work in 2002 and was disestablished in March 2009.[18]

There remains a relatively high level of controversy in New Zealand relating to the development and use of GMOs in the context of crops and farm animals.[19]  The debate includes public opinion and political stances regarding the economic benefits[20] of genetic engineering as opposed to those gained from protecting New Zealand’s “clean, green image,”[21] as well as questions about the environmental risks from genetic modification, the impact on human health, and consideration of spiritual and cultural values, particularly the perspectives of Māori.[22]  As a result of this discussion, and the regulatory approaches that have been developed in an attempt to address and balance the various concerns and interests, there is a large amount of information and analysis available on the subject of genetic modification, ethics, and the law in New Zealand.[23]  This includes information produced by governmental bodies, academics, and NGOs, as well as reporting and commentary in the media. 

Back to Top

III.  Structure of Pertinent Legislation

Matters related to the regulation of GMOs are governed by national legislation.  There has recently been controversy regarding the ability for local authorities to impose a more restrictive approach on the release of GMOs under their official planning documents, which are developed under the rules set out in the Resource Management Act 1991 (RMA).[24]  The RMA is currently under review and the government has stated that it may seek to amend the legislation to clarify that such authorities cannot establish their own rules regarding GMOs.[25]

As with the RMA, which is New Zealand’s core environmental legislation, the preliminary provisions in the HSNO Act are of central importance in its interpretation and application.  Section 4 states that the purpose of the legislation is “to protect the environment, and the health and safety of people and communities, by preventing or managing the adverse effects of hazardous substances and new organisms.”[26] 

Other preliminary provisions set out key principles and relevant matters that must be taken into account in the exercise of decision-making functions under the Act.  The wording of these provisions reflects the various societal interests and concerns associated with new and genetically modified organisms, and requires a detailed assessment of risks and benefits.  For example, “the maintenance and enhancement of the capacity of people and communities to provide for their own economic, social, and cultural well-being and for the reasonably foreseeable needs of future generations” is a matter that must be taken into account in achieving the purpose of the Act.[27]  Section 6 of the Act lists several other considerations, including sustainability; “the intrinsic value of ecosystems”; public health; the relationship of Maori with their ancestral lands, water, valued flora and fauna, etc.; and the economic costs and benefits of a particular new organism.[28]  In addition, the legislation states that “[a]ll persons exercising powers and functions under this Act shall take into account the principles of the Treaty of Waitangi (Te Tiriti o Waitangi).”[29]

Furthermore, section 7 of the Act explicitly requires persons exercising functions and powers under the Act to take a precautionary approach, stating that they must “take into account the need for caution in managing adverse effects where there is scientific and technical uncertainty about those effects.”[30]  Different parts of the Act regarding application and approval procedures for the importation, development in containment, field testing, and release of GMOs contain additional considerations relating to the potential risks, costs, and benefits of the activity.

The HSNO Act is administered by the Ministry for the Environment, while the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) is responsible for implementing the provisions relating to the application and assessment process for new organisms.[31]  The Ministry for Primary Industries has a range of responsibilities related to HSNO Act enforcement and compliance as well as food safety regulations.[32]

Apart from the HSNO Act and associated regulatory instruments, other legislation that relates to the control of genetically modified organisms includes the following:[33]

  • The Biosecurity Act 1993,[34] which provides for the exclusion, eradication and management of pests and other unwanted organisms in New Zealand, and includes provisions relating to import and border controls and various powers of relevance to the release of GMOs.[35]  In addition to the inspection and clearance procedures in this law, relevant provisions on importation[36] are also contained in the Imports and Exports (Living Modified Organisms) Prohibition Order 2005.[37]
  • The Australia New Zealand Food Safety Code[38] (applicable in New Zealand under the Food Act 1981[39]), which requires that any food that is genetically modified or contains genetically modified material must be approved by Food Standards Australia New Zealand[40] and be clearly labeled. 
  • The Animal Welfare Act 1999,[41] which regulates the use of animals in research and testing, requires that every project be approved and monitored by an animal ethics committee and only be conducted by organizations that follow an approved ethical code of conduct.[42]  
  • The Agricultural Compounds and Veterinary Medicines Act 1997[43] and Medicines Act 1981,[44] which also contain restrictions relevant to the importation, manufacture, sale, and use of medicines and compounds containing genetically modified organisms.

Back to Top

IV.  Restrictions on Research, Production, and Marketing

Section 25 of the HSNO Act states that no new organism shall be imported, developed, field tested, or released unless approval is granted under the Act.  Section 27 sets out the types of approval that may be granted by the EPA, including for the import for release or release from containment of any new organism, and for the import of any new organism into containment, or to field test or develop any new organism in containment.

Section 39 allows the EPA to approve the importation, development, or field testing of any new organism in containment.  Applications for such approval must cover a number of matters, including providing information on “all the possible adverse effects of the organism on the environment.”[45]  In making determinations on applications to develop or field test genetically modified organisms in containment, in addition to the considerations discussed above, the EPA must take into account any adverse effects on “human health and safety” and “the environment, in particular ecosystems and their constituent parts,” as well as alternative methods for achieving the research objective and “any effects resulting from the transfer of any genetic elements to other organisms in or around the site of the development or field test.”[46] 

Procedures relating to notification and public submissions apply to applications to import, field test, or release of GMOs, and public hearings may be held on an application.[47]  However, a rapid assessment process is available for research activities in indoor containment that are considered to be low risk.  This process can be delegated to a lower-level body and does not involve public notification of the application.[48] 

Back to Top

V.  Restrictions on Releasing Organisms into the Environment

Any approval to develop or field test new organisms must include controls that address particular matters set out in Schedule 3 of the HSNO Act,[49] including facility and access requirements aimed at limiting the likelihood of any accidental release, monitoring and phytosanitary requirements, eradication plans for escaped organisms, and inspection and monitoring of facilities.[50]  In addition, an approval must include controls to ensure that the genetically modified organism and any heritable material is removed or destroyed at the end of the development or field test.[51]  Part 7 of the HSNO Act contains detailed provisions relating to inspections and other enforcement powers with respect to activities involving the importation, development, field testing, or release of new organisms.

Applications can be made for approval to release new organisms (either from containment or through importation).[52]  The HSNO Act lists minimum standards that allow the EPA to decline such an application where the new organism is likely to

  • (a) cause any significant displacement of any native species within its natural habitat; or
  • (b) cause any significant deterioration of natural habitats; or
  • (c) cause any significant adverse effects on human health and safety; or
  • (d) cause any significant adverse effect to New Zealand’s inherent genetic diversity; or
  • (e) cause disease, be parasitic, or become a vector for human, animal, or plant disease, unless the purpose of that importation or release is to import or release an organism to cause disease, be a parasite, or a vector for disease.[53]

In addition, the EPA must take into account “the ability of the organism to establish an undesirable self-sustaining population” and the ease with which the organism could be eradicated if such a population was established.[54]

As a result of the 2003 changes to the HSNO Act, the EPA may grant approval for “conditional release” with controls.[55]  The various controls that can apply to any approval include controlling the “extent or purposes for which organisms could be used”; imposing requirements for monitoring, record-keeping, and reporting; “requiring contingency plans to be developed to manage potential incidents”; limiting the proximity of the organism to other organisms; and imposing obligations on those that hold approvals, such as compliance with relevant codes of practice or standards and requiring certain levels of training or knowledge.[56]

Back to Top

VI.  Restrictions on GMOs in Foodstuffs

New Zealand currently imports more than fifty varieties of genetically modified food ingredients, including ingredients derived from GM crops such as corn and soybeans.[57]  In order to be sold in the country, each GM food or ingredient must be evaluated by Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) and determined to be safe for consumption, then approved by the FSANZ Board and by all Australian and New Zealand ministers responsible for food regulation.[58]  A particular standard, Standard 1.5.2 – Food Produced Using Gene Technology,[59] which is part of the Australian New Zealand Food Standards Code,[60] contains the regulations for food containing GMOs and lists the ingredients that have been given approval. 

Standard 1.5.2 also contains rules relating to the labeling of foods, ingredients, additives, or processing aids that contain novel DNA or protein, or where genetic modification has resulted in an altered characteristic in the food.  These labeling requirements have been in place since 2001.  Such products or ingredients must be labeled with the words “genetically modified” either next to the name of the food or in the ingredient list.[61]  Labeling is not required where “there is no more than 1% (per ingredient) of an approved GM food unintentionally present as an ingredient or processing aid in a non-GM food.”[62]  The requirements do not apply to food prepared in restaurants.[63]

Animal feed containing genetically modified ingredients is not subject to the same labeling requirements, and meat and dairy products from animals fed such feed also does not need to be labeled under the food regulations.[64] 

Back to Top

VII.  Liability Regime

Various criminal offenses are set out in section 109 of the HSNO Act, including, in contravention of the Act, developing or field testing a new organism; knowingly importing or releasing a new organism; knowingly, recklessly, or negligently possessing or disposing of a new organism illegally imported, manufactured, developed, or released; failing to comply with any controls imposed by any approval granted under the Act; and failing to report any new information of any adverse effect of a new organism.[65]  The penalties for such offenses are set out in section 114 and include fines ranging from up to NZ$5,000 (about US$4,100) to up to NZ$500,000 (about US$414,000), depending on the offense.  The court can also order a person to mitigate or remedy any adverse effect on people or the environment or pay the costs of doing so and may order the destruction of any new organism.[66]

The Act specifies that some of the offenses listed in section 109 are strict-liability offenses where it is not necessary to prove that the defendant intended to commit the offense.[67]  However, several defenses are available.

Part 7A of the HSNO Act, which was inserted by the 2003 amendments, provides for pecuniary penalty orders and civil liability for breaches relating to new organisms.  Pecuniary penalty orders may be granted by the High Court where it is satisfied that the person

  • (a) developed, field tested, imported, or released a new organism in breach of this Act; or
  • (b) possessed or disposed of any new organism imported, developed, or released in breach of this Act; or
  • (c) failed to comply with any controls relating to a new organism—
  • (i) imposed by any approval granted under this Act; or
  • (ii) specified in regulations made under this Act.[68]

The standard of proof that applies under this part is that which applies in civil proceedings.  Under the Act, an individual may be ordered to pay a pecuniary penalty of up to NZ$500,000, while a company may be required to pay up to NZ$10 million (about US$8.3 million).  Alternatively, a company may be ordered to pay three times the commercial gain resulting from the contravention, or 10% of the company’s turnover.  The court can take various considerations into account in determining the level of the penalty.[69]  It can also order that a person mitigate the adverse effects on people or the environment.[70]

The Act also provides that a person is liable in damages for any loss or damage caused by an act or omission while, for example, developing, field testing, importing, or releasing a new organism in breach of the Act.  Liability may be incurred regardless of whether a person intended the act, omission, or breach, or was taking reasonable care.  Civil proceedings for damages are in addition to any other action.[71] A defendant can prove one or more listed defenses in order to avoid liability under these provisions.[72]

Back to Top

VIII.  Judicial Decisions / Prominent Cases

Since the completion of the Royal Commission process, there have been various controversies relating to the development and potential release of genetically modified organisms.  For example, there has been public debate and legal proceedings related to research involving farm animals,[73] including in 2009–2010 in relation to approvals granted for trials involving putting synthetic human genes into goats, sheep, and cows to see if they would produce human proteins in their milk.[74] 

In terms of plants and other organisms, during the mid-2000s, authorities investigated the importation and possible planting of certain seeds (particularly maize and corn) that potentially contained genetically modified material.[75]  Other incidents that have generated some controversy have involved containment breaches.  For example, in March 2013 it was reported that a genetically modified fungus had been discovered outside containment facilities at a university.[76]  Some groups raised concerns, but government authorities investigating the incident indicated that it presented very low biological risks.[77]  There have also been reports of various activities by anti-GM protestors.  For example, genetically modified pine trees that had been contained at a research center were destroyed by protesters in 2012.[78] 

Most recently, an environmental group has initiated court proceedings seeking to overturn an exemption from HSNO Act rules that was granted to a research institute in relation to a new DNA manipulation technique.  The case will be heard by the High Court in November 2013.[79]

Back to Top

Kelly Buchanan
Chief, Foreign, Comparative, and International Law Division I
March 2014


[1] USDA Foreign Agricultural Service, GAIN Report: New Zealand – Biotechnology – GE Plants and Animals (July 15, 2010), http://gain.fas.usda.gov/Recent%20GAIN%20Publications/Biotechnology%20-%20GE%20Plants%20and%20Animals_Wellington_New%20Zealand_7-15-2010.pdf.

[2] About GM in New Zealand, Ministry for the Environment (MFE), http://www.mfe.govt.nz/issues/managing-environmental-risks/organisms/gm-in-nz/about.html (last updated May 17, 2013).  See also Field Tests and Outdoor Developments of Genetically Modified Organisms, Environmental Protection Authority (EPA), http://epa.govt.nz/new-organisms/popular-no-topics/Pages/GM-field-tests-in-NZ.aspx (last visited Oct. 25, 2013).

[3] USDA Foreign Agricultural Service, GAIN Report: New Zealand Biotechnology Environment (July 15, 2013), http://gain.fas.usda.gov/Recent%20GAIN%20Publications/Agricultural%20Biotechnology %20Annual_Wellington_New%20Zealand_7-15-2013.pdf; New Microorganisms in New Zealand, EPA, http://www.epa.govt.nz/new-organisms/popular-no-topics/Pages/GM-EI-vaccine.aspx (last visited Oct. 25, 2013).

[4] See Labelling & Safety – Questions & Answers, Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI),http://www.food smart.govt.nz/whats-in-our-food/genetically-modifed-food/labelling/questions-answers.htm (last visited Oct. 25, 2013).

[5] About GM in New Zealand, supra note 2.

[6] Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996, http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1996/0030/latest/ DLM381222.html.  “New organism” is defined in section 2A to include genetically modified organisms.

[7] See 2003 Law Changes in Response to the Royal Commission on Genetic Modification, MFE, http://www.mfe.govt.nz/issues/managing-environmental-risks/organisms/regulation/hsno-law-changes/2003.html (last updated May 21, 2013).

[8] See Government Response to the Royal Commission’s Report, MFE, http://www.mfe.govt.nz/issues/managing-environmental-risks/organisms/gm-in-nz/commission/government-response.html (last updated May 17, 2013).

[9] Report of the Royal Commission on Genetic Modification (2002), available at http://www.mfe. govt.nz/publications/organisms/royal-commission-gm/index.html.

[10] About the Royal Commission on Genetic Modification, MFE, http://www.mfe.govt.nz/issues/managing-environmental-risks/organisms/gm-in-nz/commission/about.html (last updated May 17, 2013). See also Allan Coukell, A Step Forward for Genetic Engineering in New Zealand, N.Y. Times (Aug. 21, 2001), http://www.nytimes.com/2001/08/21/science/a-step-forward-for-genetic-engineering-in-new-zealand.html.

[11] See, e.g., Paul Gorman, GM Trials’ Failure ‘Not Law’s Fault’, Stuff.co.nz (Apr. 12, 2012), http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/farming/6732484/GM-trials-failure-not-laws-fault; David Fisher, GE Law Probe a Big Surprise, New Zealand Herald (Nov. 20, 2011), http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1 &objectid=10767413; Press Release, McGuinness Institute, Time for New Zealand to Revisit the Genetic Modification Debate (Aug. 29, 2013), http://www.mcguinnessinstitute.org/site/publications/media_releases/ media_release_29_august_2013.aspx.

[12] GAIN Report: New Zealand Biotechnology Environment, supra note 3.

[13] About the Royal Commission on Genetic Modification, supra note 10.

[14] See Press Release, Hon. Pete Hodgson, GM Research Moratorium Keeps NZ’s Options Open (Apr. 17, 2000), http://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/gm-research-moratorium-keeps-nz039s-options-open.

[15] Press Release, Hon. Marian Hobbs, New GM Legislation in Force as Moratorium Expires (Oct. 29, 2003), http://www.beehive.govt.nz/node/18221.

[16] See Kevin Taylor, Government Opens Door to GE Despite Protests, Polls and Threats, New Zealand Herald (Oct. 29, 2003), http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=3531306.

[17] Spiritual, Cultural and Ethical Issues in Genetic Modification, in MFE, Genetic Modification – The New Zealand Approach (June 2004), http://www.mfe.govt.nz/publications/organisms/gm-nz-approach-jun04/html/page5.html.

[18] See Toi Te Taiao: The Bioethics Council, MFE, http://www.mfe.govt.nz/website/closed-sites/bioethics.html (last updated Jan. 14, 2010).

[19] See, e.g., GM Fight Still Rages 20 Years On, TVNZ (Nov. 29, 2008), http://tvnz.co.nz/health-news/gm-fight-still-rages-20-years-2340450; Editorial, The Genetic Modification Debate, Otago Daily Times (Sept. 27, 2013), http://www.odt.co.nz/opinion/editorial/227675/genetic-modification-debate

[20] See The Treasury, Economic Risks and Opportunities from the Release of Genetically Modified Organisms in New Zealand (Apr. 17, 2003), http://www.treasury.govt.nz/economy/reports/gmo

[21] See Joanna Gamble, Genetic Engineering: The New Zealand Public’s Point of View, The University of Auckland (2001), https://researchspace.auckland.ac.nz/handle/2292/863; Doug Ashwell & Su Olsson, “To Be or Not To Be”: An Analysis of Political Rhetoric in the New Zealand Debate on Genetic Modification, Australia and New Zealand Communication Association Online Journal (2002), http://www.hss.bond.edu.au/ANZCA/ papers/SOlssonDAshwellPaper-.pdf; Pauline Hamilton, GE or Not GE: The Genetic Engineering Debate in New Zealand, 31(12) Chemical Innovation 59 (Dec. 2001), http://pubs.acs.org/subscribe/archive/ci/31/i12/html/ 12vp.html.

[22] See generally Parliamentary Library, Background Note: Genetic Modification (Feb. 21, 2002), http://www.parliament.nz/NR/rdonlyres/42B8A108-0670-4C7E-B242-5D430E6BC1AF/370/0201 Geneticmodification1.pdf; Dana Rachelle Peterson, Genetic Modification: A Resource Document for MPs (Parliamentary Library Background Paper No. 26, Feb. 2002), http://www.parliament.nz/NR/rdonlyres/4CA0C507-3047-486B-8E6C-DFEBE9AB761E/416/BP26_GeneticModification3.pdf.

[23] For general background information, see MFE, Genetic Modification: The New Zealand Approach (June 2004), http://www.mfe.govt.nz/publications/organisms/gm-nz-approach-jun04/genetic-modification-nz-approach.pdf.  A list of government publications on new and genetically modified organisms is available on the MFE website at http://www.mfe.govt.nz/publications/organisms/ (last visited Oct. 25, 2013).

[24] See, e.g., Keri Molloy, Genetic Modification a Hot Topic, Northern News (May 22, 2013), http://www.stuff.co.nz/auckland/local-news/northland/northern-news/8699303/Genetic-modification-a-hot-topic; Julie Moffett & Felix Marwick, Tighter Rules on Genetic Modification in Auckland, NewstalkZB (Sept. 24, 2013), http://www.newstalkzb.co.nz/auckland/news/nbnat/1571363499-tighter-rules-on-genetic-modification-in-auckland.  For information on GMOs and the RMA, see Genetic Modification (GM) and Local Government, MFE, http://www.mfe.govt.nz/issues/managing-environmental-risks/organisms/regulation/gm-local-govt.html (last updated May 17, 2013).

[26] Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996, s 4.

[27] Id. s 5(b).

[28] Id. s 6.

[29] Id. s 8.  Similar “Treaty clauses” are included in various pieces of legislation in New Zealand and have both legal and symbolic meaning.  The clause prevents the Crown and its representatives from acting inconsistently with obligations to Māori and related principles that have been interpreted as applying under the Treaty of Waitangi signed between Māori tribes and the British Crown in 1840.  See Principles of the Treaty, Waitangi Tribunal, http://www.waitangi-tribunal.govt.nz/treaty/principles.asp (last visited Oct. 25, 2013).

[30] Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996, s 7.

[31] New Organisms and the HSNO Act, MFE, http://www.mfe.govt.nz/issues/managing-environmental-risks/organisms/regulation/hsno.html (last updated May 17, 2013); What We Do: Hazardous Substances and New Organisms, EPA, http://www.epa.govt.nz/about-us/what/Pages/Hazardous-substances-and-new-organisms.aspx (last visited Oct. 25, 2013).

[32] See New Organisms and the HSNO Act, supra note 31; About Us – Our Organisation, MPI, http://www.biosecurity.govt.nz/biosec/org (last updated May 8, 2012); Our Role in Enforcement, EPA, http://www.epa.govt.nz/about-us/what/Pages/EPA-role-enforcement.aspx (last visited Oct. 25, 2013).

[33] NZ Laws Regulating New Organisms, MFE, http://www.mfe.govt.nz/issues/managing-environmental-risks/organisms/regulation/nz-laws.html (last updated May 17, 2013).

[35] See Biosecurity Act 1993, MPI, http://www.biosecurity.govt.nz/biosec/pol/bio-act (last updated Oct. 19, 2012).

[36] See generally, Importing Genetically Modified Organisms, MPI, http://www.biosecurity.govt.nz/ regs/imports/plants/gmo (last updated Oct. 10, 2012).

[37] Imports and Exports (Living Modified Organisms) Prohibition Order 2005, http://www.legislation.govt.nz/ regulation/public/2005/0012/latest/DLM311538.html.

[38] New Zealand (Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code) Food Standards 2002, available at http://www.foodsafety.govt.nz/elibrary/industry/zealand-australia-zealand-food-standards/ (last visited Oct. 25, 2013).

[40] Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ), http://www.foodstandards.gov.au/Pages/default.aspxSee Australia-New Zealand Co-operation, MPI,http://www.foodsafety.govt.nz/policy-law/food-regulation/australia-nz-cooperation/ (last visited Oct. 25, 2013).

[42] Animals in Research, MPI, http://www.biosecurity.govt.nz/regs/animal-welfare/research (last updated Sept. 13, 2013).

[43] Agricultural Compounds and Veterinary Medicines Act 1997, http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1997/ 0087/latest/DLM414577.html.

[45] Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996, s 40(2)(a)(v) & 40(2)(b)(v).

[46] Id. s 44A.

[47] Id. ss 53–54, 60–61; What Types of New Organism Applications are Publicly Notified and Open for Submission?, EPA, http://www.epa.govt.nz/about-us/have-your-say/Pages/notified-applications.aspx (last visited Oct. 25, 2013).

[48] Id. ss 41–42B; Hazardous Substances and New Organisms (Low-risk Genetic Modification) Regulations 2003, http://www.legislation.govt.nz/regulation/public/2003/0152/latest/DLM195215.htmlSee generally, Are you Importing, Developing, Regenerating or Fermenting Low Risk Genetically Modified Organisms in an Indoor Containment Facility in New Zealand?, EPA, http://www.epa.govt.nz/new-organisms/find-application-form/application-finder/Pages/low-risk-applications.aspx (last visited Oct. 25, 2013).

[49] Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996, s 45(2).

[50] Id. sch 3.

[51] Id. s 45A.

[52] Id. ss 34 & 38.

[53] Id. s 36.

[54] Id. s 37.

[55] Id. ss 38A & 38B.

[56] Id. s 38D.

[57] See GM Current Applications and Approvals, FSANZ, http://www.foodstandards.govt.nz/consumer/gmfood/ applications/pages/default.aspx (last updated Sept. 2013).

[58] For general information on the rules and requirements, see Genetically Modified Food – Overview, MPI,http://www.foodsmart.govt.nz/whats-in-our-food/genetically-modifed-food/overview/ (last visited Oct. 25, 2013); Genetically Modified Food – Labelling & Safety – Questions and Answers, MPI,http://www.foodsmart.govt.nz/ whats-in-our-food/genetically-modifed-food/labelling/questions-answers.htm; MPI, Genetically Modified Food and Ingredients (updated Apr. 2013), http://www.foodsafety.govt.nz/elibrary/industry/Genetically_Modified-Expectations_Importers.pdf.

[59] Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code ‑ Standard 1.5.2 ‑ Food Produced Using Gene Technology, http://www.comlaw.gov.au/Details/F2013C00199.

[60] See Food Standards Code, FSANZ,http://www.foodstandards.govt.nz/code/Pages/default.aspx (last visited Oct. 25, 2013).

[62] Id.

[63] Id.

[64] GAIN Report: New Zealand Biotechnology Environment, supra note 3.

[65] Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996, s 109.

[66] Id. s 114(5) & (6).

[67] Id. s 117(1).

[68] Id. s 124B.

[69] Id. s 124C.

[70] Id. s 124D.

[71] Id. s 124G.

[72] Id. s 124H.

[73] Branwen Morgan, New Zealand’s GM Cattle Under Fire, Nature (Mar. 27, 2010), http://www.nature.com/news/ 2010/100327/full/news.2010.155.html; Jeff Neems, Anti-GE Backers File Appeal Against Trials, Waikato Times (June 25, 2010), http://www.stuff.co.nz/waikato-times/news/3853353/Anti-GE-backers-file-appeal-against-trials.  

[74] Eloise Gibson, Human Genes to be Injected into Goats, Cows, and Sheep, New Zealand Herald (Apr. 16, 2010), http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10638717; Eloise Gibson, Mutant Cows Die in GM Trial, New Zealand Herald (May 1, 2010), http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id= 1&objectid=10642031.

[75] See, e.g., Press Release, MPI (previously Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF)), MAF Releases Imported Corn Seed Report (Feb. 1, 2007), http://www.biosecurity.govt.nz/media/01-02-07/gm-corn.htm; Press Release, MAF, MAF Investigation into GM Maize Nears Completion (May 28, 2004), http://www.biosecurity.govt.nz/media/ 28-05-06/gm-maize.

[76] Thomas Mead, Genetically Modified Fungus Leaked, 3News (Mar. 20, 2013), http://www.3news.co.nz/ Genetically-modified-fungus-leaked/tabid/423/articleID/291058/Default.aspx.

[77] Press Release, MPI, MPI Investigates GM Breach at Lincoln University (Mar. 19, 2013), http://www.mpi.govt.nz/ news-resources/news/mpi-investigates-gm-breach.

[78] Hundreds of GM Trees Destroyed, Stuff.co.nz (Apr. 13, 2012), http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/6735584/ Hundreds-of-GM-trees-destroyed.

[79] Isaac Davison, American Chemical Giant out of NZ Court Case, The New Zealand Herald (Oct. 10, 2013), http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11137661.

Back to Top

 

 

Last Updated: 11/03/2014