Homekill & recreational catch service providers

If you consume or use homekill or recreational catch, or provide slaughter or processing services for homekill or recreational catch, you need to comply with the Animal Products Act (APA) 1999. Learn more about these requirements.

Defining homekill and recreational catch

Homekill is the slaughtering and butchering of your own animal - either by yourself or by a listed homekill and recreational catch service provider - for your own use and consumption. Homekill meat must not be traded. Homekill is covered under Part 6 and Part 10 of the APA.

Recreational catch is the activity of killing, capturing, collecting or harvesting and then processing of a wild animal by a recreational hunter, fisherman or other person undertaking similar recreational activities for their use and consumption. Recreational catch meat must not be traded. Recreational catch is covered under Part 6 and Part 10 of the APA.

New Zealand Legislation: Animal Products Act 1999 (External website)

Homekill

These brochures outline the rules that apply to both the animal owner and any homekill or recreational catch service provider they might employ to slaughter and butcher their animal:

Homekill (387 KB PDF)

Homekill for recreational catch service providers – the basics (463 KB PDF)

Homekill for animal owners – the basics (441 KB PDF)

Recreational Catch

This brochure outlines the rules that apply to recreational catch, including homekill or recreational catch service providers’ role.

Overview of recreational catch: Animal Products Act 1999 Information Pamphlet

Role of a homekill and recreational catch service provider

Homekill and recreational catch service providers are those who provide slaughter and/or processing services for reward to animal owners for homekill or to hunters, fishers or other harvesters for recreational catch. This includes the dressing and butchering of recreational catch. Service providers must not trade any homekill or recreational catch meat.

Homekill and recreational catch service providers must comply with the APA. As part of this you need to:

  • be listed as a homekill and recreational catch service provider with MPI
  • keep inventory records as specified in the Animal Product (Homekill and Recreational Catch Service Provider Records and Information) Specifications Notice.

You need to be familiar with all your legal obligations under Part 6, and the offence provisions under Part 10 of the APA. Below are some key points service providers need to be aware of:

  • Service providers are able to provide their services at their own premises or property, at the animal owner or recreational hunter’s property, and – in the case of recreational catch – at or near the place where the animal was hunted or harvested.
  • It is illegal for a service provider to provide homekill slaughter or processing services for an animal owner who has not been involved in the day-to-day maintenance of the animal (or animals of the same kind) for at least 28 days prior to its slaughter.
  • The service provider must return homekill or recreational catch product for human or animal consumption to the animal owner or recreational hunter it came from.
  • Service providers may not trade any homekill or recreational catch product for human or animal consumption. Only parts of the animal that are not for human or animal consumption, such as hides and skins, may be traded. Offal and fat waste may be sold or disposed of to a rendering operation.

Listing as a service provider

All homekill and recreational catch service providers, including Dual Operator Butchers (DOBs), must be listed with MPI.

Use the AP2 application form to apply to be listed as a homekill recreational catch service provider. It is your responsibility to renew your listing each year if you are undertaking homekill or recreational catch services for reward.

AP2 – Homekill and recreational catch service provider listing (298 KB, PDF)

AP2 – Homekill and recreational catch service provider listing (332 KB, WORD)

Once listed, your details are maintained on MPI’s public listing of all New Zealand homekill and recreational catch service providers.

List of homekill and recreational catch service providers

Exemption from listing

If you perform any of the following tasks, and it is the only service you provide in relation to homekill and recreational catch, you are exempt from the need to be listed as a service provider.

  • Transporting homekill or recreational catch
  • Performing taxidermy
  • Heading, gutting or filleting of fish on recreational charter vessels.

Refer to the Animal Products (Exemptions and Inclusions) Order (External website) for further information.

Keeping inventory records

Under the APA, all service providers need to keep records and have a system to identify animal material and animal products. Please refer to the following Notices for the full requirements:

Homekill and Recreational Catch Service Provider Records and Other Information Notice (from 1 May 2015)

You can choose to use the following records forms to keep your records, or you can develop your own.  For tips on how to complete these forms go to Appendix 2 of A Guide to Homekill and Recreational Catch (see below)

Record 1: Client details

Record 2: Business details

Record 3: Service record

Registration with NAIT

You must register with NAIT. In cases where cattle are taken off an owner’s farm to the service provider’s property for slaughter, you must record cattle movements and deaths in the NAIT database. From March 2013 this requirement will also apply to deer.

Trading in hides and skins

If you sell hides and skins, you must keep separate records of the animal species, the dates of the transactions and the name of the purchaser of the hides and skins.

Humane killing

If an animal must be killed for humane reasons at a location other than the animal owner’s own property or a listed service provider’s premises or place, or by a person other than the owner or a listed service provider, that may still be treated as homekill.

If a service provider kills an animal for humane reasons, for example, after an accident, you must record the date, location, reason for slaughter, distribution of the animal material and – if known – the name and address of the animal owner.

Select and slaughter is prohibited

Some homekill operations have involved a person (client) selecting an animal from a farmer, and then having the farmer immediately slaughter the animal for the person to take away, or providing the facility and equipment for the person to slaughter the animal at the farmer’s place.

Such 'select and slaughter' activity amounts to trading homekill product and is prohibited. This type of activity carries a maximum fine of $300,000 for a body corporate and $75,000 for an individual. Under this offence provision, both the person buying/'selecting' the animal and the person providing the facilities for the 'slaughter' are able to be charged.

At the heart of this prohibition is the policy intention that those persons who are animal owners can kill and process their own animals only on their own property, or use the services of a homekill and recreational catch service provider only if they have been engaged in the day-to-day management of the animal, or other animals of the same kind, for a period of at least 28 days.

If you want to buy an animal for meat from a farmer or from the saleyards an option is to send it for slaughter within the regulated system at an abattoir registered with MPI.

Homekill and recreational catch is non-regulated meat

Homekill and recreational catch product that is for human or animal consumption is non-regulated product and cannot move into the regulated system. It cannot be traded under any circumstances.

Where animal owners choose to have their animals slaughtered in a premises managed under the regulated system (e.g. in a registered abattoir) the product would be regulated. However, if the resulting product is further processed by a homekill or recreational catch service provider, the product would then become non-regulated and could not be traded.

Dual operator butchers (DOBs)

If you process homekill or recreational catch at the same premises or place as a retail butchery, you are classified as a DOB. To read the requirements specific to DOBs, click on ‘processing & selling in NZ’ in the left-hand menu, then select ‘dual operators’.

Requirements in detail

For a full explanation of the requirements and restrictions around homekill and recreational catch see this guide:

A Guide to Homekill and Recreational Catch

Homekill and recreational use – questions and answers

You can find more detailed information on homekill and recreational catch here:

Homekill and recreational catch use - questions and answers (30 KB PDF)