Overview – Food monitoring progammes

Monitoring food to ensure it is safe and suitable is one of the vital tasks carried out by MPI. You can find a summary of MPI's food monitoring programmes here.

The role of monitoring in food safety

Providing safe, nutritious and suitable food is a priority for New Zealand, which relies on food exports for its economic well-being. MPI's monitoring programmes play a crucial role in ensuring food produced and consumed in New Zealand is safe and suitable by:

  • verifying that the food production systems are managing risks to food safety
  • establishing safe levels for residues, contaminants and other hazards.

The programmes cover an extensive range of food products from production and harvest to the point of sale.

Different programmes monitor different foods

Many of the programmes are specific to domestically produced food or a food sector:

  • National Microbiological Database (NMD) – monitors meat and poultry
  • National Chemical Residues Programme (NCRP) – monitors cattle, sheep, goats, deer, horses, pigs, ostrich, wild animals, poultry, salmon and honey for residues and contaminants
  • National Chemical Contaminants Programme (NCCP) – monitors food safety hazards in dairy products and milk
  • Shellfish Biotoxin Monitoring Programmes – 2 programmes monitor commercially harvested bivalve molluscan shellfish (BMS) and BMS gathered for recreation for residues and contaminants
  • a finfish monitoring programme, which is funded by industry
  • Food Residues Surveillance Programme – surveys food available on the domestic market, including imported food that is not included in other programmes.

The following programmes have a different purpose.

  • New Zealand Total Diet Study – every 5 years measures residues and contaminants in the average diet, which when combined with model diets allows an estimation of exposure to these residues and contaminants relative to the acceptable daily intake
  • Imported Food Monitoring Programme – monitors food safety hazards in imported foods.

What you will find here

The Food monitoring programmes section of the site is split into various sub-sections. Use the menu on the left to find your way around.

The information is divided so that you can find information about and documents relating to:

  • Regulation of monitoring programmes – find out about the legislation that governs MPI's food monitoring programmes and how these are founded on risk management principles.
  • Sampling and testing of food – describes the various mechanisms by which sampling regimes and plans are issued for each programme and how laboratory testing is controlled.
  • Monitoring programmes under the Animal Products Act 1999 – there are a range of programmes under the APA which apply to some farmed meat, poultry, dairy, seafood and honey. These include NMD, NCRP, NCCP and the shellfish, finfish and salmon biotoxin monitoring programmes.
  • Monitoring programmes under the Food Act 1981 – find information about 2 programmes under the Food Act – the Food Residues Surveillance Programme (FRSP) and the Imported Food Monitoring Programme (IFMP) – which monitor food residues in domestic and imported food.
  • New Zealand Total Diet Study (NZTDS) – information about the population groups and foods involved in this long-term study of contaminants, residues, elements and nutrients in the typical diet of New Zealanders.

Further sub-sections provide more generic information relevant to Food monitoring programmes:

  • Documents – the Industry eLibrary has many documents relevant to the Food monitoring programmes. There is a documents page associated with each programme where you can find a full list of documents related to that particular programme.
  • What’s new – check this page regularly for important updates relevant to Food monitoring programmes.

Related information

General requirements & programmes

Food sectors

Keeping up to date

If you want to keep up to date with any new or revised information about Food monitoring programmes, there are different ways you can do this. Choose the methods that work best for you:

What’s new – Click on What’s new in the left-hand menu to read the most recent updates to Food monitoring programmes.

Get emails – Sign-up to receive the latest MPI food safety news by email. Click on the Get emails link in the right-hand panel or at the bottom of any page to sign-up for email notifications.

Subscribe to feeds – Sign up to receive news feeds. Click on the Subscribe to feeds link at the bottom of any page to add to your list of news feeds.