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WHAT IS MANUKA HONEY?
Manuka Honey is a unique honey that comes from the Manuka flower nectar gathered by the bees in New Zealand. Manuka (or mānuka) is a Māori word that refers to the flower that grows on both New Zealand’s North and South Islands. The Manuka shrub has a very short annual bloom, which means that Manuka Honey is rare and highly sought after. Over 60 different compounds have been isolated from Manuka nectar, including antioxidants and polyphenols. Moreover, its multitude of uses makes Manuka Honey a multitasking superfood.
HOW SHOULD I ENJOY MANUKA HONEY?
Our consumers tell us that they enjoy our Manuka Honey by the heaping teaspoonful, several times a day depending on their lifestyle preferences. Or, you can simply use it as you would any other honey: with breakfast, in smoothies or other food pairings, pre, post and during workouts, in DIY beauty masks, and so much more. Check out ourrecipes page for ideas.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN KFACTOR™ 12 AND 16 MANUKA HONEY?
KFactor™ 16 is guaranteed to meet or exceed the standard for Monofloral Manuka Honey set by the MPI (the Ministry for Primary Industries) in New Zealand.
KFactor™ 12is guaranteed to meet or exceed the standard for Multifloral Manuka Honey set by the MPI in New Zealand.
WHAT ARE THE STANDARDS FOR MONOFLORAL AND MULTIFLORAL MANUKA HONEY SET BY THE MPI IN NEW ZEALAND?
The regulatory definition focuses on defining two levels of Manuka honey - Monofloral Manuka honey for Manuka Honey which is predominantly from the Manuka flower and Multifloral Manuka honey for Manuka Honey blended with other floral sources. All Manuka honey products exported from New Zealand need to meet either the Multifloral or Monofloral regulatory definition of Manuka and be appropriately labeled. All Manuka Honey is tested against five markers for authenticity – only honeys achieving these levels are able to be called Manuka Honey. Monofloral and Multifloral certification have different minimum levels for two of the five markers. To learn more about the specific tests for Monofloral and Multifloral Manuka honey, including the five specific markers and the minimum levels required for compliance, click here.
IS THIS REGULATION NEW? I SEE MANY DIFFERENT TYPES OF MANUKA HONEY CERTIFICATIONS ONLINE SUCH AS KFACTOR, MGO, UMF, AND ACTIVE – WHICH ONE IS REAL?
After three years of in-depth research by Zealand’s Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI), the MPI developed this standard to define and regulate Manuka honey in New Zealand for worldwide export. Until recently, there was neither a single definition nor a government approved methodology for Manuka Honey, which caused consumer confusion. In December 2017, MPI announced that it would use a science-based definition to authenticate whether or not a particular honey is New Zealand Manuka honey to be effective February 5, 2018. All honey production on or after that date must comply with the new standard to be sold as New Zealand Mono-or Multifloral Manuka honey. Product produced and in the distribution system before February 5, 2018, may be sold through in most countries including the US. Prior to the regulated definition, New Zealand honey labelling guidelines were in place that forbid the use of terms like “active”, “total activity”, “antibacterial”, and “non-peroxide activity,”; honey jar labels using these terms were illegal and not packed in New Zealand.
The new regulatory definition represents a watershed moment for the Manuka honey industry. With these new standards, consumers can be more confident than ever that they are getting genuine New Zealand Manuka honey - as long as they are buying Manuka packed in New Zealand. Therefore, consumers should always look for the FernMark or ‘Packed in New Zealand’ on their Manuka Honey jars to ensure authenticity.
WHY ISN’T WEDDERSPOON A MEMBER OF THE UMF HONEY ASSOCIATION?
The UMF Honey Association promotes chemical markers that were found unstable by the Ministry of Primary Industries. These UMF markers were purposefully excluded from the MPI’s definition of Manuka Honey. For more information on which markers were chosen by the MPI, please visit their page here.
UMFHA is a voluntary, paid membership trade association whose marketing methodology differs from our beliefs. Wedderspoon believes in the synergistic properties of the markers of Manuka Honey and using minimal processing to retain the nutrients of Manuka Honey as freshly produced by bees, rather than influencing or accelerating the increase of one particular chemical marker to match a marketing methodology. We don’t believe in adding or taking away anything from our raw Manuka Honey – it’s truly hive to home.
What is KFactor?
Our KFactor™ methodology encompasses not only New Zealand’s regulations for Manuka Honey but is also comprised of five ‘key factors’ which focus on the holistic, synergistic qualities of authentic Manuka Honey.
KFactor Manuka Honey is always:
- Non-GMO Project Verified - Raw and unpasteurized - Traceable from hive to home - Sourced and packed in New Zealand for authenticity - Free of antibiotics, glyphosate, and pesticides
DO YOU PRODUCE AND PACK ALL OF YOUR MANUKA HONEY IN NEW ZEALAND?
Absolutely! Wedderspoon takes pride in harvesting, packaging, and labelling all jars of our Manuka honey in New Zealand. Globally, we were the first Safe Quality Food (SQF) certified Manuka honey, and still are the only Manuka honey facility which meets the SQF certification requirements for both Food Safety and Food Quality. Level 3, the highest level of SQF certification, shows our commitment to meeting the stringent and evolving international Best Practice food standards. We are also proud to bear the FernMark license on our Manuka Honeys. The FernMark is formal recognition of our role as an ambassador of the New Zealand story and serves as a third party verification that our products are authentically from New Zealand. Click here to check out our FernMark page!