I'm working on a site update for a client. The current version of their site stores a lot of information within custom post meta fields, added as plain text boxes using Advanced Custom Fields. We think this information would serve the site better if it existed as a taxonomy, so we'd like to move all this information into a custom taxonomy.

This is a film site and one example is that the film's director is stored as a plain text post meta field. If it were part of a Director taxonomy instead, we could easily look at all films tagged with that Director.

So my question - is there is an easy way to move or copy information in a post meta field to a custom taxonomy? My plan at the moment is to look at a plugin for copying info between taxonomies and seeing if I can modify that. But if anyone knows of another solution, I'd be grateful!

Many thanks.

  • 1
    There's no easy way. Your best bet would be to write a WP-CLI script to loop through the posts and assign the new terms to your custom taxonomy as you go.
    – vancoder
    Aug 13, 2020 at 21:02

1 Answer 1


You will need to write some code for this I think. Start creating the new taxonomies and the query the right custom field to get the list of values. Use wp_insert_term() to add the new term. Then use wp_set_post_terms() to assign the terms to each post.

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