Update as at 6th August 2023
The Health (Fluoridation of Drinking Water) Amendment Bill aka the Mandatory Fluoridation Bill was enacted in 2021. Directives have been sent to 14 councils to order them to start fluoridation. A further 27 councils have been sent a letter of intention of a directive. Details on this page.
Campaigns are starting in various places around the country. FFNZ is holding public meetings around the country. See our Local Campaigns page to see what is happening in each area.
In 2016 the National party introduced the Health (Fluoridation of Drinking Water) Amendment Bill. The Bill, which sought to take decision making away from local councils to the District Health Boards, went through a Select Committee process in February 2017.
At the election in November 2017, the National party was replaced with a coalition of Labour, the Greens and New Zealand First. The New Zealand First party kept the legislation at bay so that it remained waiting for its Second Reading throughout their term in Government.
At the election in October 2020, the Labour party was voted in without the need for any coalition partner and New Zealand First did not make the 5% threshold to be in parliament at all.
In early 2021 Labour announced that they would change the legislation to make the Director General of Health will be the sole decision maker.
Overview of the latest activity in every fluoridating council
Prior to August 2019
Since the introduction of the Health (Fluoridation of Water) Amendment Bill, our focus has been on central Government. Therefore we have been focusing on central Government. Part of that action has been to write to Health Minister David Clark and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.
Physicians and Scientists for Global Responsibility have also been writing to the Government. See Physicians and Scientists for Global Responsibility Warn NZ Govt of Fluoride Dangers
In September 2018 we hosted three international experts who spoke at Otago University and in Wellington.
For more detailed information see is my town fluoridated?
Number of Territorial Authorities (i.e. local body councils) in New Zealand is 67, number that have any fluoridation is 23. Since 2010 four councils have stopped fluoridation: Far North, Taumarunui-Ruapehu, New Plymouth and Central Hawke’s Bay. Hamilton and Whakatane both stopped at different times and then restarted.
2. Hamilton Stopped Fluoridation on the 5th of June 2013 but a subsequent referendum found 68% of voters in favour of fluoridation. Council decided on the 28th of February 2014 to restart fluoridation in June 2014. Legal action by SWANZ was withdrawn on the 3rd of September 2014.
4. Whakatane – referendum result 61% of voters in favour of fluoridation, 39% of voters against. In January 2016, Council voted to end fluoridation 6 – 5. This vote was reversed 8 days later with a vote 6 – 4. The vote hinged on one councilor reversing his position. Read the press release.
5. Gisborne District Council – Gisborne city only fluoridated town, no major activity.
6. South Waikato District Council – Tokoroa only fluoridated town, no major activity.
7. Waikato District Council – Quite a few towns are fluoridated in this region, Ngaruawahia being the largest. The Council voted to uphold their 2011 decision to extend fluoridation to Te Kauwhata and Hopuhopu. Fluoride will be added to the Te Kauwhata water plant which supplies Te Kauwhata, Meremere and Springhill Prison. This leaves water supplies in Hopuhopu, Raglan, Pokeno, Tuakau and Port Waikato as not being fluoridated. Budget provision has been made by the Waikato Council for fluoridation of Hopuhopu’s water.
8. Taupo District Council – Taupo and Turangi are fluoridated. FFNZ has started Council a petition against Taupo Council adding toxic fluoride chemicals to Lake Taupo Outcome of submissions to 2015 draft annual plan was that Council decided to review fluoridation as part of the 2017 Long Term Plan
T9. Hastings – referendum result 64% of voters in favour of fluoridation, 34% of voters against.
10. Manawatu District Council – Fielding only fluoridated town.
11. Palmerston North – Due to lots of submissions in 2013 led to a review of fluoridation. 25th May 2013 Manawatu Standard – Mayor wants fluoride review. $10,000 was spent on a review by Beca Consultancy in 2014 with the result being the continuation of fluoridation. Council have now built a tap at Papaioea Park to provide fluoridation free water .
12. Stratford District Council – only town of Stratford fluoridated, no major activity
13. South Taranaki District Council – Hawera only fluoridated town at this stage although council voted in 2013 to extend to Patea and Waverley despite finding out vast majority did not want it. Judicial Review now lodged with New Plymouth District Council objecting to the decision on the basis that fluoridation has no legal standing and is a breach of human right. 30th April 2013 Taranaki Daily News – Ruling Ends up in Court. On 7 March 2014 the Judge gave a result that New Health’s application to review the Council’s decision fails. Appeal is due to be heard mid 2016.
14. Masterton District Council – Masterton only fluoridated town in whole of Wairarapa
15. Kapiti Coast District Council – Nearly stopped in 2010 but ended up only reducing the level to 0.7ppm. Kapiti News – Fluoride labelled a Poison Fluoridation was on the Draft Annual Plan for 2014. The Council decided to continue fluoridation on 5 June 2014.
16. Porirua City Council – Porirua fluoridated since 1965, no major activity
18 Lower Hutt Council held discussion with Fluoride Free New Zealand and the Hutt Valley DH in November 2015. The mayor has indicated the issue was not closed but looks unlikely Council will make any moves this year (2016) because it is election year.
19. Wellington city councillors are mostly very pro-fluoridation so no progress there. However, more Regional Councillors are open so progress is being made.
20. Ashburton District Council – stopped in Ashburton in 2002 but continued in small town of Methven after refendum in 2008.
23. Invercargill – Lots of submissions in 2013 but councillors decided to continue without any public consultation.
24. Central Otago District Council – No fluoridation at present. Council had decided to start fluoridation in Ranfurly but have since decided to put on back burner. ODT Fluoridation decision delayed for up to 14 years