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About us

About allergies 029 1What we do

Allergy New Zealand is a national membership-based, not-for-profit society whose primary role is to provide information, education, and support to the many thousands of New Zealanders living with allergies, including those at risk of anaphylaxis.
We also represent their interests particularly to government, policy makers and the media, provide information and guidance to the health, education and food sectors, and support research.
We have the advice and support of a medical panel, which is made up of allergy specialists, nurses and dietitians (see below).

Since 2007, we have been honoured to have Sir Peter Charles Leitch QSM , aka The Mad Butcher, as our Allergy New Zealand Ambassador. Sir Peter has provided an enormous amount of support in fundraising and building our profile.


Improved quality of life for people living with allergies


To raise awareness of allergies, provide support, and represent the interests of people living with allergies, especially children and their families.

Our Values

We value our reputation as a credible organisation with integrity, providing the latest internationally-validated information about allergies; and our staff, members, and volunteers, whose teamwork and commitment is essential to the success of our organisation.

How we operate

A Board of Directors is elected by members at our Annual General Meeting. Our staff include:
Chief Executive
Mark Dixon
Office Manager
Penny King
Allergy Advisor
Penny Jorgensen
Siobhan Waterhouse

How we work

Please see our organisational chart here.

National Support Network

Many members assist Allergy New Zealand on a voluntary basis particularly in providing support through our National Support Network. Regional Coordinators provide support to families in their local areas, using their personal experiences as well as training and resources provided by Allergy New Zealand. Our support network is growing, so click here to find out who is in your area.


As a membership-based organisation we welcome members and encourage people to join not only in order to receive regular information and access support, but also to support Allergy New Zealand and be a part of one of the leading patient/consumer-based organisations in New Zealand. If you would like to join, click here.

Membership is open to anyone with an interest in allergy. Allergy New Zealand has more than 1000 members including 15 life members. We also provide complimentary membership on the grounds of hardship, as recommended by GPs and specialists. For a free information pack, which includes a copy of Allergy Today, contact Membership Service.


Allergy New Zealand is supported by funding from grants, membership fees, donations, and fundraising activities including sponsorship. Please note that as a registered charity, Allergy New Zealand has donee organisation status confirmed by Inland Revenue.


Allergy New Zealand advocates for research in all aspects of allergy, with a focus on improving access to treatment, support and one day a cure. We support NZ researchers and research programmes wherever possible, and have been actively involved in a number of studies.


We began in 1981 as ‘Allergy Awareness’, by people living with allergies, parents and interested health professionals. The organisation was run for many years by hard-working and dedicated volunteers including (to name just a few) Neil and Ivy Hickman, Dr J. Chunn, Carolyn Sutherland, John Datson, Margaret Wong, Joanna Paul, and Natalie Lloyd. Our sincere thanks go to these and the many other volunteers who have been involved, without whom Allergy New Zealand would not exist today.

In 1999, the organisation changed its name to ‘Allergy Awareness Association New Zealand’. In 2001 it became Allergy New Zealand Incorporated. As of 5 April 2007 we are registered with the New Zealand Charities Commission, Registration No: CC10148.

International support

We are a founding member of the International Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Alliance (IFAAA), a network of national food allergy support organisations across 10 countries including Australia, USA, Canada, UK, Europe and Japan. Food Allergy is a global problem, and through the Alliance we are able to share the latest information and research and work together internationally in all areas which impact on food allergy sufferers.

Medical and Scientific Advisory Panel 

Assoc Prof Rohan Ameratunga
Dr Andy Baker
Prof Brian Broom
Dr Shannon Brothers
Pauline Brown
Dr Penny Fitzharris
Dr Miriam Hurst
Jenny Heyward
Susie Lester
Anna Richards
Dr Vincent St Aubyn Crump
Dr Miriam Hurst
Susie Lester
Dr Jan Sinclair
Dr Richard Steele