Plastic Wrapping Regulations 1979

as at 21 December 1979

Coat of Arms of New Zealand

Plastic Wrapping Regulations 1979

(SR 1979/272)

Keith Holyoake, Governor-General

Order in Council

At the Government House at Wellington this 17th day of December 1979

His Excellency the Governor-General in Council


Changes authorised by section 17C of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989 have been made in this reprint.

A general outline of these changes is set out in the notes at the end of this reprint, together with other explanatory material about this reprint.

These regulations are administered by the Ministry of Health.

Pursuant to the Health Act 1956, His Excellency the Governor-General, acting by and with the advice and consent of the Executive Council, hereby makes the following regulations.


1 Title and commencement
  • (1) These regulations may be cited as the Plastic Wrapping Regulations 1979.

    (2) These regulations shall come into force on the 14th day after the date of their notification in the Gazette.

2 Certain plastic bags to be labelled with warning to children
  • (1) Except as provided in subclause (2), no person shall, in the course of any business, use, for the packing in connection with the sale or delivery or return to a customer of any commodity that is in domestic use, any wrapping in the form of a bag made of polyethylene or similar plastic material of a thickness of 0.025 mm or less, unless there is conspicuously printed on the bag the following warning:

    DANGER—Keep away from small children. The film may cling to the face and prevent breathing.

    (2) This regulation does not apply to any bag—

    • (a) that is made of polyethylene film of a thickness of more than 0.015 mm and of a density of more than 0.945 mg/mm3; or

    • (b) that is made of polypropylene, polyester, or polyamide film of a thickness of more than 0.015 mm; or

    • (c) that has a maximum opening of less than 162 square centimetres.

3 Offence
  • Every person commits an offence and is liable accordingly under sections 136 and 137 of the Health Act 1956 who uses any wrapping in contravention of regulation 2.

4 Revocations
  • The following regulations are hereby consequentially revoked:

    • (a) the Plastic Wrapping Regulations 1960 (SR 1960/151):

    • (b) the Plastic Wrapping Regulations 1960, Amendment No 1 (SR 1975/5).

P G Millen,
Clerk of the Executive Council.

Explanatory note

This note is not part of the regulations, but is intended to indicate their general effect.

These regulations are made pursuant to the Health Act 1956, and replace the Plastic Wrapping Regulations 1960.

They continue the present requirement that a suitable warning be printed on certain types of plastic bags pointing to the danger of children being suffocated if the bags are drawn over their faces. However, the new regulations exempt those bags that are of a sufficient stiffness to avoid the clinging properties that present the principal hazard.

Issued under the authority of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989.

Date of notification in Gazette: 20 December 1979.


  • 1General

  • 2Status of reprints

  • 3How reprints are prepared

  • 4Changes made under section 17C of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989

  • 5List of amendments incorporated in this reprint (most recent first)

1 General
  • This is a reprint of the Plastic Wrapping Regulations 1979. The reprint incorporates all the amendments to the regulations as at 21 December 1979, as specified in the list of amendments at the end of these notes.

    Relevant provisions of any amending enactments that contain transitional, savings, or application provisions that cannot be compiled in the reprint are also included, after the principal enactment, in chronological order. For more information, see .

2 Status of reprints
  • Under section 16D of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989, reprints are presumed to correctly state, as at the date of the reprint, the law enacted by the principal enactment and by the amendments to that enactment. This presumption applies even though editorial changes authorised by section 17C of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989 have been made in the reprint.

    This presumption may be rebutted by producing the official volumes of statutes or statutory regulations in which the principal enactment and its amendments are contained.

3 How reprints are prepared
  • A number of editorial conventions are followed in the preparation of reprints. For example, the enacting words are not included in Acts, and provisions that are repealed or revoked are omitted. For a detailed list of the editorial conventions, see or Part 8 of the Tables of New Zealand Acts and Ordinances and Statutory Regulations and Deemed Regulations in Force.

4 Changes made under section 17C of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989
  • Section 17C of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989 authorises the making of editorial changes in a reprint as set out in sections 17D and 17E of that Act so that, to the extent permitted, the format and style of the reprinted enactment is consistent with current legislative drafting practice. Changes that would alter the effect of the legislation are not permitted.

    A new format of legislation was introduced on 1 January 2000. Changes to legislative drafting style have also been made since 1997, and are ongoing. To the extent permitted by section 17C of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989, all legislation reprinted after 1 January 2000 is in the new format for legislation and reflects current drafting practice at the time of the reprint.

    In outline, the editorial changes made in reprints under the authority of section 17C of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989 are set out below, and they have been applied, where relevant, in the preparation of this reprint:

    • omission of unnecessary referential words (such as of this section and of this Act)

    • typeface and type size (Times Roman, generally in 11.5 point)

    • layout of provisions, including:

      • indentation

      • position of section headings (eg, the number and heading now appear above the section)

    • format of definitions (eg, the defined term now appears in bold type, without quotation marks)

    • format of dates (eg, a date formerly expressed as the 1st day of January 1999 is now expressed as 1 January 1999)

    • position of the date of assent (it now appears on the front page of each Act)

    • punctuation (eg, colons are not used after definitions)

    • Parts numbered with roman numerals are replaced with arabic numerals, and all cross-references are changed accordingly

    • case and appearance of letters and words, including:

      • format of headings (eg, headings where each word formerly appeared with an initial capital letter followed by small capital letters are amended so that the heading appears in bold, with only the first word (and any proper nouns) appearing with an initial capital letter)

      • small capital letters in section and subsection references are now capital letters

    • schedules are renumbered (eg, Schedule 1 replaces First Schedule), and all cross-references are changed accordingly

    • running heads (the information that appears at the top of each page)

    • format of two-column schedules of consequential amendments, and schedules of repeals (eg, they are rearranged into alphabetical order, rather than chronological).

5 List of amendments incorporated in this reprint (most recent first)