Labelling meat and meat product packaging

Find out the labelling rules for meat or meat products for sale in New Zealand.

General label rules apply to meat and meat products

Labels on meat or meat products for sale in New Zealand must follow the general labelling rules.

How to label food and drink

But there are also some extra rules.

Declare offal

If the meat product contains brain, heart, kidney, liver, tongue or tripe, your label must say it contains offal, or which types of offal.

For example, your statement may say 'Contains offal' or 'Contains kidney and tongue'.

State the proportion of fat in minced meat

If you make a claim about the fat content of minced meat (mince), the label must show the maximum proportion of fat in grams per 100g.

When raw meat is joined or formed to look like a cut of meat

When raw meat is formed or joined in a way that looks like a cut of meat, whether coated or not, using binding but not applying heat, you must say on the label:

  • the food is meat that is formed or joined, and
  • how to cook it so the food is within safe microbiological limits.

Fermented comminuted processed or manufactured meat

If you label fermented comminuted processed meat, or fermented comminuted manufactured meat (for example, salami, pastrami, beer sticks, biltong) the label must give certain names.

If processed

If the meat has:

  • not been heat treated or cooked, it must be called ‘fermented processed meat – not heat treated’
  • been heat treated, it must be called ‘fermented processed meat – heat treated’
  • been cooked, it must be called ‘fermented processed meat – cooked’.

If manufactured

If the meat has:

  • not been heat treated or cooked, it must be called ‘fermented manufactured meat – not heat treated’
  • been heat treated, it must be called ‘fermented manufactured meat – heat treated’
  • been cooked, it must be called ‘fermented manufactured meat – cooked’.

Both processed and manufactured

If the label shows a trade name, these words must be shown near the trade name:

  • if not heat treated or cooked, ‘fermented’
  • if heat treated, ‘fermented heat treated’
  • if cooked, ‘fermented cooked’.

The label may only talk about a heating process if:

  • required by the naming rules
  • part of cooking instructions for consumers.

More on meat and meat product labelling

This page has the labelling rules that apply to many food businesses, butchers and meat processors. But there are exceptions and special conditions. Food businesses must read and follow all standards and law that may apply to their foods.

Standard 2.2.1 Meat and meat products - Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) Code

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