New Levy Proposal

Proposal to replace the American Foulbrood Apiary and Beekeeper Levy with a Hive and Beekeeper Levy

Consultation of the proposal to replace the American Foulbrood Apiary and Beekeeper Levy with a Hive and Beekeeper Levy has closed. Submissions are now being collated and reviewed.

About the American Foulbrood Levy proposal

American foulbrood (AFB) is the most serious disease affecting honey bees in New Zealand. It costs beekeepers an estimated 6% of gross returns and poses a serious risk to New Zealand’s honey exports valued at $329 million in 2017.

Under the National American Foulbrood Pest Management Plan (NPMP), beekeepers are responsible for eliminating AFB from their beehives, and the Management Agency is responsible for monitoring and auditing beekeepers’ compliance with their obligations in order to eliminate AFB from managed beehives in New Zealand.

From 4 to 22 March 2019 the Management Agency sought beekeeper views on replacing the apiary and beekeeper levy with a hive and beekeeper levy set at $40 per beekeeper and a hive levy increasing from $1.35 to $2.55 per hive over a five-year period. This will raise an additional $0.6 to $1.6 million per year to enable the NPMP to:

  • save 41,000 beehives and associated products estimated at $50 million from destruction over 10 years
  • support ongoing access to overseas markets by providing evidence that AFB is under appropriate regulatory control.

The increased levy funding would enable the Management Agency to implement a robust monitoring and audit programme that will ensure that all beekeepers are taking responsibility for eliminating AFB from their beehives.

Now that consultation has closed the Management Agency is reviewing all submissions.

Further information on the levy proposal that was consulted on can be found in the documents below:


Previous levy consultation

Access to the July 2018 AFB levy consultation can be found here.

AFB Quiz
Take the AFB 5 minute quiz

How well do you know what you need to know about AFB and beekeeping? Take our short quiz and find out.

AFB Videos

Our videos cover everything from your legal obligations to how to recognise AFB, collecting cell and bee samples and more.

AFB Symptoms

There’s a lot of good information here, telling you everything you need to know about recognising AFB: the visual symptoms, smell of AFB and more.

AFB Inspection and Diagnosis
Inspection and Diagnosis

Successfully eliminate AFB by telling the difference between symptoms of AFB and other brood diseases in the hive. We tell you the best methods for inspecting your hives.

The Law

New Zealand beekeepers have a number of legal obligations that must be met regarding AFB disease. Read the shortened list in summary, here.

AFB Elimination

Most hives become infected because bees, honey or equipment have been put into a hive from another hive that is infected with AFB. Lower your chances of an  AFB infection by reading this section.

AFB Course Info
AFB Recognition Course Info

Find out when the next AFB Recognition and Competency Courses, or Refresher Courses are available. These are held throughout the year in various New Zealand locations across the South Island and North Island.

The AFB App

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