Updates for Animal Ethics Users

Dear all Animal Ethics System users

We have rolled out a new Animal Ethics Training Module:

Animal Ethics Code of Ethical Conduct (Module 1 CEC Training) 

This is to ensure that all AgResearch Ltd staff who wish to undertake research, teaching, or testing are aware of and compliant with the Code of Ethical Conduct.

Once you complete this training, a note is added to your profile on ~ Te Ara, which will be reflected in all updated and new Animal Ethics Applications under each person’s name added to the Roles and People Section. 

This mandatory training must be completed by 10 May 2024, and after this date, all new AgResearch Animal Ethics Users must complete it before being listed on applications.

RE: Updated AgResearch Code of Ethical Conduct (CEC) 15 December 2023 to 14 December 2028.


This code describes the process we must use to obtain approval to do animal research.



Every five years, MPI requires an audit of the AgResearch Code of Ethical Conduct and all that this encompasses by an MPI-approved auditor. The CEC and the operation of the AgResearch Animal Ethics Committee (AAEC) were audited from May to July 2023, and there were no non-compliances found.


What’s happening?

The Code of Ethical Conduct is needed for AgResearch to undertake research, teaching or testing using animals.


As a staff member involved in animal research, you are required to understand this code and the responsibilities it requires and to contact us if you have any questions. 


The CEC was updated and reviewed, and ultimately, the new CEC was approved by MPI in late December 2023 to supersede the previous version.  


Significant changes 

The most significant changes to the new CEC (from the previous) are:

  • The Animal Ethics Committee (AEC) cannot consider applications under urgency between meetings. As the AAEC meets every two weeks, we consider this to have a minor impact.
  • Requests for urgent consideration of major amendments (section 4.7) to an approved application may be considered between meetings,      providing there is a valid reason for urgency, and the requested change is to an application with an impact grade of A, B or C and the amendment does not increase the impact grading of the application. Amendments to grade D and E applications must go to a meeting.
  • All Applications graded C (or D or E) must be monitored per NAEAC's guidelines (previously 50% of all C-graded applications required monitoring).
  • Porsolt swim test: The use of this test will not be considered by the AAEC.


    A link to this code and further information is on:

    1. Animal Ethics - AgResearch (AgResearch Ltd's public webpage)

    2. Animal Ethics Gateway page: Animal Ethics (sharepoint.com) (AgResearch staff only)

    3. ~ Te Ara ~ under Help/Templates (all animal ethics system users)



    If you have any questions regarding animal ethics, please get in touch with the animalethicsoffice@agresearch.co.nz or any of our team:


    Jim Webster, Team Leader and Animal Ethics Committee Chair

    Sharon Bennie, Administrator (Part-time)

    Vanessa Borman, Coordinator

    Alaina O'Brien, Animal welfare officer

    Susan Doohan, Animal welfare officer (Part-time)

    Elyssa Barnaby, Animal welfare officer (Part-time)


    Ngā mihi


    Animal Ethics Office