Buying wood pellet fuel

Learn about the Ministry’s contract for wood pellet supply, through which South Island schools can choose to buy wood pellet fuel for biomass boilers and benefit from advantageous terms and conditions, and pricing.

Level of compliance Main audience Other


  • Principals and tumuaki
  • Staff responsible for buying on behalf of their school
  • Boards


Benefits of purchasing through the contract

Due to the rigorous process undertaken to establish this contract, the Ministry has been able to agree advantageous terms and conditions, and pricing with Azwood.

Pricing benefits

  • Advantageous pricing - likely to be lower than the pricing offered to any individual school by any supplier outside of the contract.
  • Delivery included in per-tonne price - schools will not be disadvantaged for making regular orders.
  • Pricing set per-region - lower risk of schools being disadvantaged because of their distance from Azwood’s site.
  • An annual pricing adjustment - reviewed and agreed by the Ministry in line with market conditions - otherwise pricing is fixed.

Product and service benefits

  • Azwood will contact schools to check if they would like a pellet top-up whenever their delivery truck is nearby.
  • Greater certainty of continued availability of high-quality wood pellets.
  • The ability for a participating school and Azwood to agree on a School Access Plan (SAP) for when they access the school site.

Police vetting for school property contractors

Supplier profile

Azwood is a leading manufacturer of biomass wood pellets, recognised as the only producer of EnplusA1 certified wood pellet fuel in Australasia. With over a decade of experience servicing Ministry of Education institutes, Azwood ensures consistent and reliable delivery to keep schools warm.

In recent years, Azwood has collaborated with the Ministry to support the decarbonisation programme, enhancing their understanding of schools' needs for guaranteed warmth and comfort. This collaboration has enabled Azwood to develop a robust distribution network, offering premium delivery services across the South Island to maintain comfortable learning environments. 

Eligible schools

If your school is listed in the Education Counts directory and is in the South Island, you are eligible to purchase wood pellets through the contract.

Schools are strongly recommended to buy through the contract due to the associated benefits.

New Zealand Schools – Education Counts(external link)

How to join the contract

Schools interested in buying wood pellets through the Ministry’s contract with Azwood, can email either:

The Ministry and Azwood will share details of the contract with your school.

Details of the contract are commercially sensitive. They should only be shared with people directly involved in buying at your school.

To join the contract, you will be asked to review the terms and conditions and sign a Purchase Order. You only need to do this once. The Purchase Order sets out how a school can submit each order as pellets are required.

Participating schools will need to submit their own orders to Azwood. Azwood will invoice schools for each order made. The Ministry is not involved in ordering, invoicing or payment.

Wood pellet buying considerations


Wood pellets are manufactured to a range of specifications.

The wood pellets used in boilers replaced through the Ministry’s Coal Boiler Replacement Programme must be Grade A1 premium pellets. This makes sure that the boilers run as efficiently as possible, reduces wear and complies with warranty terms.

Azwood pellets are certified ENplus A1 which means they meet the requirements for Grade A1 premium specification (among the best quality).


Delivery by blower truck reduces pellet degradation during transport. Blower trucks use compressed air to blow pellets into the pellet store.

Azwood will deliver their pellets via blower truck (unless in unforeseen/exceptional circumstances).

North Island schools

The Ministry has no wood pellet supply agreement available for North Island schools to access.

North Island schools requiring pellets are advised to:

  • research suppliers trading in their area
  • provide the supplier(s) with an estimate of their annual demand (tonnes) and information on their storage capacity and facilities (tonnes)
  • ask the supplier(s) for a quote
  • purchase pellets from the best supplier available.

Also refer to wood pellet buying considerations when selecting a supplier.

Wood pellet buying considerations

More information

Azwood website(external link)

For questions, or to enquire about purchasing through the contract, email

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