Eggs

This page is a quick outline of the legal requirements for eggs and egg products for human consumption.

If you are producing eggs for animal consumption, go to the Petfood & inedibles section of this website for requirements.

Petfood & inedibles

Key requirements for egg producers & processors

All Egg businesses must meet legal requirements. The requirements that apply to your business depend what you are doing. Read the pages relevant to your business to find out the specific requirements. Here is a brief summary.

Road Map Egg Legislation (256 KB PDF)

If you produce eggs, or process, sell or export eggs or egg products for human consumption, you must meet legal requirements for food safety and suitability.

In general:

  • Egg producers must comply with the Animal Products Act 1999.
  • Primary processors (those who harvest, candle, grade and pack eggs) must operate a registered Risk Management Programme (unless exempt - see details later) under the Animal Products Act 1999.
  • Secondary processors (those who break eggs and make egg products) must operate under a registered Food Control Plan under the Food Act 2014 except where they are exporting with an official assurance. If exporting with an official assurance, you must operate a registered Risk Management Programme under the Animal Products Act.
  • All egg processors must comply with the Animal Products Act 1999 and the Food Act 2014.

You'll need to be familiar with both the above Acts, and their subordinate legislation (for example, Regulations, Specifications, Notices, and Standards).

You can find explanations of these Acts and lists of their subordinate legislation in the link below:

New Zealand food legislation

Operating under the Food Act

Rules for food businesses are changing – we're moving from the Food Act 1981 to the Food Act 2014. All new businesses must now operate under the Food Act 2014.

Existing businesses (registered under the Food Act 1981 or Food Hygiene Regulations 1974 before 29 February 2016) will shift to the new Act between 2016 and 2019. Check the timetable to find out when your type of business has to transition.

You may also have to comply with non-food legislation. (See 'Other requirements for eggs' page in the menu to the left.)

In addition, all finished products intended for human consumption must comply with Part 1 of the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code.

Use the menu to the left to find the specific requirements that apply to you.

Guidelines

You may also wish to check international guidelines for secondary processors in countries such as Australia, Canada, UK and US. For example, you can use clause 3 of FSC Standard 1.6.2 as a guide to process eggs safely.

Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code (External website)