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Offal Pits

Offal Pits

Updated 7 November 2016 11:12am

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An offal pit is a simple and cheap method for disposing of animal parts or an animal which has died or been killed on the farm. The pit is either a simple pit or trench, dug into the ground on a rural property.

When an offal pit is poorly managed or in the wrong place (close to a waterway), it can leach contaminants which negatively affect water quality, and potentially human and animal health. Therefore, the disposal of dead stock or offal requires good management practices in order to reduce the impact on the environment.

What you need to know about making a new offal pit

Making a new offal pits is a permitted activity on a  rural property under the Proposed Natural Resources Plan (PNRP)see Rule 91. This means no resource consent is needed from Greater Wellington, provided the new offal pit is:

  • located outside of a drinking water supply protection area  (see maps here)
  • dug far enough away (at least 50m) from drains, gullies and water ways and water supply bores
  • dug in soils that are not free draining, but either silty or clay soils
  • dug with plenty of clearance from the bottom of the offal pit to the water table (at least 0.6m)
  • in areas which do not flood or where water ponds
  • made so that stormwater does not flow in it
  • used only for the disposal of carcasses or offal from your farm
  • not causing any smell that could annoy your neighbours
  • its location recorded or mapped, and a copy of this information made available to Greater Wellington if requested
  • covered over and re-grassed when full (within 6 months of completion).


1. To find out whether you need a resource consent or if you are unsure about any of the requirements, please contact us: Greater Wellington,  or 0800 496 734.

2. Additional approval may be needed from your local city or district council. Please contact them directly if you need advice.

This information is intended to provide a guideline to the requirements of the Proposed Natural Resources Plan for the Wellington Region. Please also be aware of the requirements in the current operative plan as well as the provisions mentioned in this user guide.



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