New Zealand


National Animal Welfare Advisory Committee (NAWAC)

(NAWAC is not a member of EuroFAWC but has an invited observer role)


Web address 



The National Animal Welfare Advisory Committee (NAWAC) is a ministerial advisory committee established under the Animal Welfare Act 1999. The function of the National Animal Welfare Advisory Committee is to advise the Minister of Agriculture on any matter relating to the welfare of animals in New Zealand. In particular NAWAC provides advice to the Minister on legislation and codes of welfare relating to farmed, domestic, wild and pest species.



NAWAC is comprised of 11 members appointed by the Minister. Members serve in a personal capacity representing particular areas of expertise including veterinary, animal, agricultural, medical and veterinary science, the commercial use of animals, ethics, conservation, animal welfare advocacy, companion animals, education and public interest, and not as representatives of their employer or nominating body. The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) provides scientific, policy and legal advice as well as secretariat support.


Working methods

The full Committee meets four times a year with subcommittees meeting on an as-needed basis to work on a particular code of welfare or topic. One of NAWAC’s key roles is the development and recommendation of codes of welfare to the Minister for issue. The Act provides for the development of codes of animal welfare and gives legal force to the minimum standards that they contain. Codes specify minimum standards and promote best practice for the care and management of animals.The committee recommends a code of welfare to the Minister following consultation with affected parties, public consultation and independent peer review. Each code is accompanied by a report detailing the reasons for NAWAC’s recommendations and any significant differences of opinion identified during the public submission process.



NAWAC has several publications

  • Annual reports
  • Codes of Welfare
  • Guidelineswhich set out the principles and procedures by which it operates

Access to publications: 

All publications can be accessed on following website

Hard copies can be requested by email.


Contact details

NAWAC Secretary

MAF Animal Welfare Standards

P O Box 2526


Phone: ++ 61 0800 00 83 33