Applying for approval

There are several types of new organism applications. Work out if you need approval and which application you should make.

Do you need an approval?

You need approval if the organism you wish to import, develop, field test or release fits the definition of a new organism and is viable.

Determining whether your organism is new

Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and organisms that were not present in New Zealand before 29 July 1998 are considered new.

Existing approvals you could use

In some cases you may not need to apply for an approval to import a new organism because one already exists.

Make an application

Here you'll find information about the different types of new organism applications you can make, the application process, and the form to use.

The application process

A general overview of the processes and statutory timelines for the different new organism application pathways.

Reassessment of approvals

Sometimes we might need to take a second look at an approval for a new organism.

Amend an existing approval

An amendment allows changes to a new organism approval after it has been given.


Containment means to restrict a new organism in a secure location or facility.