About 10,000 cannabis plants have been seized as part of the police and New Zealand Defence Force's annual operation.

The operation was carried out across the last two months and covered Nelson, Marlborough, the West Coast, Manawatu, Horowhenua, Whanganui, Ruapehu and Taranaki.

A raid on a West Coast property netted the biggest haul – 500 cannabis plants and 1.3kg of dried head and leaf.

Detective Senior Sergeant Scott McGill said 68 per cent of the cannabis plants that were seized and destroyed came from the Tasman region.


Thirty firearms and more than $50,000 in cash were also seized during the operation.

McGill said the areas where cannabis was being cultivated were remote so the defence force's air support was vital.

One raid netted 500 cannabis plants equalling 1.3kgs in weight. Photo / NZDF
One raid netted 500 cannabis plants equalling 1.3kgs in weight. Photo / NZDF

"It has dealt a blow to those engaged in these illegal activities. But more importantly, about 10,000 cannabis plants have been destroyed and will no longer be marketed in our communities, especially to our young people," he said.

Air Commodore Andrew Clark, the Air Component Commander, said the anti-cannabis crackdown was one of the tangible ways the NZDF assisted the New Zealand public.

"Police were able to reinforce their message that they will continue to stamp out these illegal activities and prevent social harm in our communities. It was also an excellent opportunity to consolidate our training and has strengthened our ability to operate with NZ Police," he said.