Qualmark New Zealand Limited is New Zealand tourism’s official quality agency. It is a government and private sector partnership between Tourism New Zealand and New Zealand Automobile Association. Qualmark licenses New Zealand tourism businesses to use the Qualmark ‘tourism’s official quality mark’ to help international and domestic travellers select places to stay, things to do and ways to get around.
Qualmark was established in 1993. Qualmark has a fully integrated system for assessing all accommodation, transport, activities and services to ensure that they deliver world-class visitor experiences.
Official spin: As the official mark of quality for tourism in New Zealand, Qualmark — qualmark.co.nz — is extending and enhancing its environmental and social assessment criteria for accommodation providers, visitor activities, transport and services. For tourism businesses, this means meeting some ‘minimum requirements’ in this area, along with recognising operators who are actively participating in
- energy efficiency
- conservation initiatives
- waste management
- community activities
- water conservation
Maori cultural programs
Qualmark Green at TRENZ Breakfast – Beehive
Elsewhere on the Web
Green Standards Cause Ecotourism Debate
Monday, 4 August 2008, 11:25 am
Press Release: Ecotourism
New Green Standards Cause For Debate At Ecotourism NZ Conference
Qualmark’s new environmental criteria are a good first step but its standards aren’t far reaching or high enough for ecotourism, say the organisers of the upcoming Ecotourism NZ Conference.
“Basically, we’re concerned it doesn’t go far enough,” Ecotourism NZ chair Brian MacKenzie says. “There’s nothing to distinguish ecotourism operators from mainstream Qualmark members, like hotels and camper van companies, or reflect the extra lengths they go to.”
“Business management, marketing, customer satisfaction are all there but the assessment needs to include interpretation and education, conservation values, environmental management – the things that matter to ecotourism.”
Minimum environmental standards will apply to all Qualmark licence holders as part of their quality accreditation assessments from today (1 August 2008).
The ‘Qualmark Green’ initiative and its impact on operators will be examined in detail at the Ecotourism NZ Conference in Greymouth on 12 to 14 August. Speakers include representatives from Qualmark, Ecotourism Australia, New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, the Ministry of Tourism, environmental experts and leading tourism operators.
Mr MacKenzie says while the initiative is a good start, even its highest standards fall below what ecotourism operators are already doing when it comes to caring for the environment.
“One of the things we’ll be discussing with Qualmark at the conference will be whether or not there’ll be an addition to their top standard, Qualmark Enviro-Gold, to recognise the features that make ecotourism special and the extra effort ecotourism operators go to.”
“There’s definitely more work to be done. No doubt there’ll be some good debate going on at the conference around this issue. Hopefully we can come up with a positive outcome for ecotourism operators.”
New Zealand Ecolabelling Trust is a voluntary, multiple specifications based environmental labelling programme, which operates to international standards and principles. Initiated and endorsed by the New Zealand Government, Environmental Choice recognises the genuine moves made by manufacturers to reduce the environmental impacts of their products and provides a credible and independent guide for consumers who want to purchase products that are better for the environment.
Mark Dumble and Eric Foley @ the NZ Backpacker Industry Conference | New Zealand Tourism Research Institute
Mark Dumble and Eric Foley are the directors of BBH NZ. With a history in travellers’ accommodation stretching back as far as 1974, Mark and Eric have clocked up a combined total of almost 60 years in this sector of the industry. Survivors of the early 80’s NZ “backpacker” accommodation development, they coordinated a mutual support group of other early operators which morphed in ’87 into BBH NZ Ltd. A Pioneer of customer satisfaction ratings and an early participants on the world wide web (1995), BBH now represents more than 300 independent operators providing around 12,000 beds to the NZ Tourism industry.
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