Welcome to the official website of the Aggregate and Quarry Association of New Zealand. It is specifically for people who would like to find out more about quarrying and the role it has to play in our society. The quarrying industry provides essential materials to meet the demands of New Zealand’s growth and infrastructure.

A strong economy and excellent quality of life are literally built on a foundation of aggregates. Aggregates touch our lives everyday, from the driveway to the workplace. We drive, stand and walk on aggregates yet their importance to society is almost universally under estimated.

Without aggregates we would not have roads, railways, airports, schools, hospitals and other public buildings, clean water supplies, electrical power and a myriad of every day items such as glass and crockery.

Without aggregates we would neither be able to maintain our existing vital infrastructural facilities nor would the built environment be able to expand enabling economic growth both regionally and nationally.

We hope the information in this site outlines the importance of what we do, and in particular the high priority we place on environmental issues within the industry.


Sight safety

A health and safety plan for the safety of staff and quarry visitors is the responsibility of the company, and implementation is the responsibility of every person on the site.  For full information on what is required under the law, see the WorkSafe website: www.business.govt.nz/worksafe/ and click on extractives in the left hand menu.

If you are operating a quarry then holding a Certificate of Competence is essential.  The regulations,   The Health and Safety in Employment (Mining Operations and Quarrying Operations) Regulations 2013 are available on the WorkSafe website (web address above).

The industry’s health and safety council, MinEx, has a wealth of information www.minex.org.nz on its site.  You can also download a copy of People Come First, a Ministry of Building and Innovation in Employment publication about building a strong health and safety culture in New Zealand mines, quarries and tunnels.  Hard copies of the publication are available from WorkSafe.

Radio interview

You can listen to Pavement research for better roads an interview with Steve Bagshaw and Phil Herrington onOur Changing World, Radio NZ  http://www.radionz.co.nz/audio/player/20152463

Are we still in the stone age?

Our Planning and Technical Advisor, Bill Bourke, says yes, we are, your can download his presentation on the topic here.  The presentation was made to the NZ Society of Local Government Managers in November 2014.

What's the definition of a quarry?

 The definition of a quarry or quarrying operation is defined in the Health and Safety in Employment Amendment Act 2013, in italics below. This definition needs to be read in its entirety. If any person (includes a company) is extracting and processing ‘material, other than any coal or mineral, from the earth’ then it is a quarry.  Subsection (1) (b) & (c) states that the extraction (digging up) and processing (crushing and/or screening) can be carried out at different places. This is still a quarrying operation; eg an alluvial quarry where river gravel is loaded onto trucks (extracted) and transported 50kms to a yard where it is crushed and/or screened (processed).

Subsection 2 addresses the size and frequency of the operation. The size of an operation does not necessarily reflect the hazards on site; ground control, machine guarding, heavy vehicle and light vehicle and pedestrian inter-action and electrical installation, to name some. 

(1) In this Act, quarrying operation

(a) means an activity carried out above ground for the purpose of—

(i) extracting any material, other than any coal or any mineral, from the earth; or

(ii) processing any material, other than any coal or any mineral, at the place where the material is extracted; and

(b) includes the place where an activity described in paragraph (a) is carried out; and

(c) includes any place in which any material extracted or processed in a quarry is crushed or screened.

(2) Subsection (1) applies whether or not the material is to be extracted or processed for commercial gain and whether or not the material is extracted or processed by the use of explosives.

To see the full Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992 go to


2013-2014 Chair's Report to Members

You can download a read the AQA Chair, Andrea Cave's reports for the past year here.

MIMICO Environmental Excellence Awards 2014                       

 Congratulations to our four award winners 2014:

Gold             Higgin’s Baldwin Quarry, Waikato

Silver           Winstone Aggregate’s  Hunua Quarry, Papakura.

Bronze        Holcim’s Bombay Quarry, Pokeno

Bronze        Winstone Aggregate’s Pukekawa  Quarry, Pukekawa

MITO update

During 2013, representatives from the mining and quarrying industries worked with MITO to develop five proposed New Zealand Certificates and Diplomas, to replace the current National Certificates and Diplomas in 2016. Designed by industry, for industry, and developed in line with the Pike River Implementation Plan, the proposed qualifications have been submitted to NZQA for their approval.

There are currently 20 National Certificates and Diplomas for the extractives industry. The five proposed qualifications are to replace 19 of these—the additional qualification, the Certificate in Underground Mines Rescue, is being reviewed at the moment, and we hope to consult on this later in the year.

For more information about the project or current extractives qualifications, please visit www.mito.org.nz/extractives/extractive. If you would like to provide feedback on the proposed qualifications, be involved in the review, or simply have questions, please email Samantha McNaughton on samantha.mcnaughton@mito.org.nz.






To become a member please complete the Application for Membership form or contact us for further information and a membership pack.

MIMICO Environmental Excellence Awards 2015

Entries for 2015 are now open, and we are keen to hear about the environmental work you have been engaged in, major or minor.  Take a look at the entry form to see how simple it is to be involved.

 Aggregate News

-  see the latest edition here

AQA Business Plan 2014-2015

Download your copy here

Health and Safety

WorkSafe have recently issued Best Practice Guidelines for Safe Use of Machinery file:///C:/Users/Temp/Downloads/safe-use-of-machinery-guidelines.pdf.  It outlines the hazards that come with using machinery in the workplace, potential injuries and how best to control these hazards. It gives duty holders advice on how to use machinery safely and meet their duties under the Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992 (HSE Act) and the Health and Safety in Regulations 1995 (HSE Regulations). When using this guideline, consider the unique demands of your workplace and industry; there may be other hazards and risks not covered in this guideline.

Understanding NZ aggregates

Two reports, Geologic Inventory of North Island Aggregate Resources: Influences on Engineering Materials Properties and South Island Aggregate Inventory:  Geological Influences on Materials Properties by Prof.  Philippa Black, Geology, School of the Environment, University of Auckland, discuss the major geological types of aggregates, their locations, and the indicative ranges of their engineering properties.  Download on our technical page under Understanding NZ aggregates.

The Tyranny of Distance

the real cost of transporting aggregates click here