Olives New Zealand

Food Safety – National Programme Registration

July 5, 2018

Members will be aware that Olives NZ has been working with MPI since April 2017 about the National Programme 1 for growers and exemption from the one aspect of National Programme 3 that is packaging. This is so that members would only need to apply for National Programme 1 but would be required to detail their packaging processes if applicable.

Olives New Zealand is pleased to advise that MPI has now approved the application for olive growers who package their own EVOO to be able to register under National Programme 1 rather than having to register under National Programme 3. You can find the formal approval in the Section 33 Exemption document, which can be found here.

Please note that the exemption applies only to olive growers registered under NP1 for their horticultural activities, who are also registered users of the OliveMark™, and who follow the procedures documented in the Olives New Zealand National Programme Template manual with the following stipulations:
• Exemption applies to repackaging of bulk Extra Virgin Olive Oil only;
• Not more than 3,000L of Extra Virgin Olive Oil is repackaged per annum per registered user;
• The resulting Extra Virgin Olive Oil is not sold for export from New Zealand.

This means that growers must use the Olives NZ National Programme Template which is available at $250 plus GST. Templates are also available for National Programme 1 (for growers who do not package oil and therefore do not need the exemption) and for National Programme 3 (for all other growers who do not meet the criteria detailed, or who make other olive products or who are also processors).

The major benefit of the National Programme 1 registration is that this will require a one-time verification visit, unless a problem arises or there is a change, rather than every two or three years as with National Programme 3. Several Branch Executives are looking at co-ordination of verification visits to reduce costs. More information will be forthcoming after harvest is over.

Contract growers, who sell their total harvest at harvest time, may not need NP1 registration if the buyer/harvester/processor captures the growing activity under their registration and are willing to take responsibility for the growing aspects. For the growing to be covered under the harvester/processor’s Risk Based Monitoring, they would be accepting legal responsibility for food safety at the growing stage.

Businesses operating under National Programmes will transition to the new requirements between 1 July 2018 and 28 February 2019. You should apply by 30 November 2018 to register your National Programme business. However you must check with your District Council on their timeframe.

Olives New Zealand would encourage members to move on meeting the new requirements as soon as possible to avoid any interruptions to their business operations. Especially if you need to make modifications to your storage, packing areas, etc.

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