A quantity of chemicals has been stolen from University of Canterbury's chemistry department - including some which could be used to manufacture illegal drugs.

Canterbury police confirmed this morning it was investigating a burglary at the university's chemistry department.

The burglary was likely to have occurred on Sunday night, Detective Sergeant Richard Quested said.

"A scene examination has been completed and police inquiries are ongoing," he said.

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"Anyone who finds any suspicious chemicals or discarded chemical containers should call 111 immediately and not touch them."

A University of Canterbury spokesperson said the university had taken immediate action to move certain chemicals and compounds to a more secure central store and had checked other departments on campus.

The university had also put in place a range of additional security measures across the university campus.

Police officers will be on site again today.

Anyone who has any information in relation to this burglary and stolen chemicals was asked to call Christchurch Central Police Station on 03 363 7400, or anonymously contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.