Sanford New Zealand – A rich history of marine expertise

Sanford Bioactives is a division of Sanford Ltd, which started as a family business in Auckland, New Zealand in 1881 and has grown into a company with over 1,400 people. Holding 19% of New Zealand’s fishing quota and with 42 vessels and 223 aquaculture farms, Sanford is New Zealand’s oldest and largest integrated fishing and aquaculture business. We have now turned our expertise in seafood to the research, development, and production of Marine Extracts, to provide the health benefits of seafood beyond just food.

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Sanford Bioactives journey


Sanford started its journey into marine extracts in 2012 with the formation of the Innovation team in Auckland. After a series of explorations and successful trials, a set of concept products were prototyped and presented to the market.


Sanford purchased an existing business, ENZAQ, producing GSM powder for export in bulk.


With growing demand from existing and new customers and an increasing pool of clinical evidence to support the positive effects of our marine ingredients, the Sanford Bioactives division of Sanford was born.


Sanford Bioactives opens it new purpose-built manufacturing facility.

Our Team
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The Sanford Bioactives comprehensive team of experts includes:

  • Engineering management
  • Research management and development technologists
  • Process design engineer and technicians
  • Specialty technical advisors
  • Quality assurance and control
  • Laboratory technician
A passion for sustainability

Sustainability sits at the heart of our business – it is fundamental to our connection with New Zealand and the growth of our business.

We understand our environmental, economic, and social choices have an impact, now and in the future and are committed to a sustainable future for our business and stakeholders, our people, customers, and communities.

Sanford’s vision is to be the best seafood company in the world through the sustainable growth of our business, and we embrace the contribution we will make towards achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs).

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)

MSC is an organisation dedicated to safeguarding seafood supplies both now and for future generations. Their many initiatives provide consumers with the reassurance that they are buying seafood caught in a sustainable manner. Sanford Bioactives ingredients include fish species that are MSC certified sustainable seafood.

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Our Greenshell Mussel aquaculture practices are rigorously and regularly checked in accordance with the A+ New Zealand Sustainable Aquaculture Programme, a comprehensive sustainable management framework covering ecology, water quality, waste management, resource use, food safety, indigenous communities, and local community involvement. 

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New Zealand half-shell mussels have among the lowest carbon footprints of all animal protein. This has been confirmed by a full lifecycle assessment of New Zealand farmed Greenshell Mussels completed using standardised lifecycle assessment methodologies (ISO 14044 and ISO 14067). 

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All Sanford’s New Zealand Greenshell Mussels are rated ‘BEST CHOICE, Buy First’ by the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch system due to being farmed ‘off bottom culture’. Products rated as ‘BEST CHOICE’ are deemed to be ‘well managed and caught or farmed in environmentally friendly ways’.

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Sanford Bioactives research and innovation hub

Sanford Bioactives is committed to working with the scientific industry to further explore New Zealand marine extracts’ potential and benefits. We work closely with agencies such as NZ Plant and Food Research, the Cawthron Institute, Massey University to develop clinically proven ingredients that meet the growing health and wellbeing needs of our consumers. Our in-house research and development capabilities can be used by third parties for further studies as we continue to build significant capabilities and solutions.

Product development - branded products

Sanford Bioactives GreenshellTM mussel powder is established in market as a core ingredient in nutritional supplements and wellbeing brand Two Islands. Two Islands is a joint venture with Sanford New Zealand supporting our ongoing marine extracts innovation pipeline and product development.

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Talk to us about your ingredients requirements or opportunities for collaboration.