Animal Identification (NAIT)

This provides traceability for individual animals, to enhance New Zealand's ability to respond quickly if there is a biosecurity incursion such as a disease outbreak.

The system provides New Zealand livestock owners, processors and government with timely and quality information on the current location, movement history and other related attributes associated with livestock.

Dairy Farmers and NAIT: What you need to know now

All people in charge of cattle have obligations under the NAIT scheme.

NAIT obligations for dairy farmers are:

  • Tag your animals with NAIT approved RFID tags
  • Get your NAIT number by registering yourself and your farm or property with NAIT
  • Register your animals with NAIT
  • Record all off-farm movements of animals with NAIT.

Tips on registering:

  • You can get your NAIT number now. It’s a straight forward process that takes less than 10 minutes. Register for a NAIT number online here
  • A NAIT number is required in addition to your Animal Health Board (AHB) herd number or dairy participant code.
  • When you register make sure you have your AHB herd number or dairy participant code handy - it'll mean NAIT can link tags you've purchased using these numbers to your NAIT account.
  • If you need help the NAIT contact centre is available on 0800 624 843.
  • NAIT allows persons in charge of animals to identify an 'information provider' such as LIC to take care of your NAIT obligations - but PICAs need to register with NAIT first and 'opt in' to take advantage of this.

Key points on tagging requirements:

  • Tagging and movement exemptions apply to capital stock where a three-year transition period applies for animals not leaving the farm, and bobby calves going direct from farm of birth to slaughter.
  • Bobby calves will continue to be identified with a direct to slaughter tag issued by the meat-processing company, rather than a NAIT tag.
  • Animals born after 1 July 2012 need to be tagged and recorded within 180 days of birth unless the above transition period applies to them.

About NAIT

Legislation was adopted by parliament which paved the way for NAIT to come into effect for cattle from 1 July 2012 and for deer from 1 March 2013. The scheme enables New Zealand to respond much more quickly in a food safety event or if there’s a biosecurity threat such as a disease outbreak. It also responds to growing demands from consumers for greater traceability in the products they buy.

For more information visit the NAIT website