What is Manuka Honey?

Manuka honey is highly sought after due to its health benefits and immunity boosting qualities, along with its rich texture, earthy taste and dark colour. It is extremely rare, being exclusively found in Australia and New Zealand.

History of Manuka honey production

The introduction of the European honeybee to Australia in 1822 began the production of manuka honey, as the bees began collecting nectar from the native manuka plants. This process resulted in the exceptional properties of manuka honey. The discovery of this honey’s therapeutic benefits led to widespread use and increased demand, with even the US Army using manuka honey for wound dressing. With all the interest in manuka honey, more and more funds were made available for manuka honey research. Research continues today investigating further health benefits of manuka honey and finding ways to produce high strength manuka honey more reliably in more abundance.

How is Manuka Honey made and produced?

Manuka plants are typically in flower for 4-6 weeks per year, and bees only forage for nectar when the weather is good, which is why good manuka honey is so rare. The beehives are placed in an area with a high number of wild manuka trees just before the season starts so that the bees are well established by the time flowering starts, ready to produce exceptional manuka honey.

How is Manuka honey graded and rated?

Researchers at the university of Dresden, Germany, identified methylglyoxal (MGO) as the active component of manuka honey, so it became the standard way to measure the strength of a honey. MGO can be easily measured and is not abundant in normal honey, making it easy to determine whether a manuka honey is genuine or fake. Our suppliers produce genuine, certified Manuka honey that can be trusted, at a range of strengths indicated by their MGO level.

Some Manuka honeys also have a UMF grade from 0-20, indicating its potency as a disinfectant, compared to phenol. According to this system, a grade of 20+ is equivalent to a 20 percent solution of phenol.

Which grades and rating of Manuka honey should I buy?

The more MGO there is in the honey, the more antiviral and antibacterial properties it has.

In general, the MGO level or grade you need depends on what you want it for.

  • Grade 2+, MGO 30+ is good for eating, but has relatively low therapeutic effects.
  • Grade 5+, MGO 85+ has general health benefits with regular consumption.
  • Grade 10+, MGO 250+ boosts the immune system and supports natural healing.
  • Grade 15+, MGO 500+ is highly therapeutic and can be used for remedial purposes.
  • Grade 20+, MGO 800+ rare and hard to find, high in minerals, antioxidants, and bioflavonoids.