What’s the deal with honey? Why should you care about where your honey comes from? And what is mānuka honey, anyway?
We typically think of honey as a remedy to soothe a sore throat or to sweeten hot tea, but why put limits on something so powerful? Mānuka honey comes from the nectar of the flowers of mānuka trees, native to New Zealand. For centuries, mānuka honey has been a traditional remedy and natural antiseptic used by the Maori people of New Zealand for cuts and burns.
History of mānuka honey
It wasn’t until the 1980’s that the benefits of mānuka honey really became public knowledge. Once the word was out about its unique antimicrobial and antibacterial properties, it became a product that many wellness companies had to get their hands on.
However, if you’re looking to buy the authentic mānuka honey, you’re probably not going to find it in a bear-shaped bottle.
According to the New Zealand government, only 17% of mānuka honey sold worldwide each year is actually the real stuff… but Flora Mānuka Honey is.
Harvested just a few weeks out of the year in the remote stretches of New Zealand’s North Island (one of the world’s most unique regions of magical volcanic and geothermal activity), Flora works in direct partnership with the Te Arawa tribe, who oversee the Onuku Māori Land Trust on which Flora Mānuka Honey is harvested and produced.
According to Flora “over 10,000 metric tons of ‘mānuka honey’ are sold each year worldwide, and only about 1,700 metric tons of authentic mānuka honey are exported from New Zealand, yearly — meaning most mānuka honey on the market is either counterfeit, diluted, or missing the signature compounds of mānuka honey altogether.”
Mānuka honey is one of the most tampered with products on the wellness market. While some labels might say “mānuka” the honey inside could be missing the enzymes and antioxidant properties to make it truly mānuka honey.
So how are so many companies getting away with this? According to Les Stowell, who is a member of the Te Arawa tribe that partners with Flora, “Although the MPI (New Zealand Ministry of Primary Industries) has addressed part of the problem with regards to preventing inauthentic mānuka honey being exported out of New Zealand, there are still major loopholes in the system.” He explains that bulk mānuka honey continues to be exported out of New Zealand, and importers are repacking it, mislabeling it, and even creating a mixture of mānuka honey with other honeys.
How to see beyond the B.S.
To help you know you’re getting exactly what you’re looking for, Flora had their collaboratively-made honey tested and certified by the only internationally recognized authentication system to provide “100% authenticated, UMF™-certified and MGO-graded mānuka honeys alongside a one-of-a-kind traceability system that allows you to view lab results on every jar of honey.”
Translation: This stuff is legit. There is no dilution or filler, just 100% wild, straight from the hive, mānuka honey that is downright rich in its signature antibacterial enzymes.