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All about Manuka

Manuka Honey Origins 

Manuka Honey has many uses and it offers so many medicinal benefits. In fact, for thousands of years going back to ancient civilisations, honey was used to help heal wounds.

There are even reports of honey being successfully used for other problems such as burns, skin ulcers and infections. Honey is a sweet and viscous fluid produced by bees and derived from the nectar of flowers.


The Unique Manuka Factor Discovery

Active Manuka Honey (Leptospermum) was first discovered by Dr. Peter Molan M.B.E. of New Zealand's Waikato University Honey Research Unit while doing routine research on the antibacterial properties of honeys in general. Dr. Molan received an M.B.E. for his outstanding work on honey. Our Australian Manuka Honey comes from bees who feed on the flowers of the Leptospermum (several species), they then take the pollen back to the hive and add an enzyme which converts it to honey.

Antibiotic activity is not found in any other honey. The best medicinal Manuka Honey, from Australia, has quite unique health properties, which make it special compared to other honeys. It is used in many ways to support the healing process that the body needs to stay healthy. All active Australian Manuka Honey comes with a rating and the higher the rating, the greater the antibacterial strength of the honey.

Why is it more expensive to buy raw Manuka Honey over commercial floral honey?

Simply, there is far more global demand than there is supply hence a high price.  The higher the grade, the more the demand, the higher the price.

It’s estimated that there is more than three times more manuka sold than there is supply. This means there is a lot of ‘fake Manuka’ being sold around the world. It’s important you check to see if you are buying a reputable brand. If the Manuka Honey seems cheap, it’s probably fake.  Make sure the honey has been tested by a reputable organisation, i.e. a University testing lab.

Commercialised honey goes through a different manufacturing process that often takes out many of the great enzymes that lead to honey’s natural bacteria and healing power. In order to produce at high levels, often what was originally pure honey is stretched further. This can occur when honey is combined with other ingredients for commercial benefit. Manuka Honey is quite special due to the rarity of the Leptospermum plant.  It is a native Australian plant that also grows in New Zealand. Not only is it rare, but the Leptospermum plant only flowers for approximately 6 weeks which limits commercial quantities of supply. The natural chemical Methylglyoxal (MGO) that is found in Manuka Honey has been found to offer concentrated bacteria-killing properties. Researchers have found that not only is Manuka Honey a fantastic antibacterial solution for external use but it also offers a number of internal benefits.

Some internal benefits include:

What is the difference between Australian Manuka Honey Brands and New Zealand Brands?

Despite our wonderful relationship with New Zealand, Manuka Honey has caused quite the stir as to whether it can be called raw ‘Manuka’ Honey in Australia? After many years of research in partnership with Australian Manuka Honey brands, the results are in. Local Manuka Honey graced the shelves not too long ago. However, the Leptospermum plant that produces the unique nectar for these bees to create it has been native to both Australia and New Zealand for thousands of years. The argument over the ‘Manuka’ name, however, simply comes down to the species. New Zealand has one particular species, while Australia has over 80. The best of Australian Manuka Honey researchers have found that not only are there prevalent species here in Australia, but some of them provide higher levels of antibacterial properties. At Nature’s Gold, we are delighted that we can produce Australian Manuka Honey. This product has proven to provide relief for many conditions, whether for internal or external use. Sharing this with the rest of the world at an affordable price level is important to us. We strongly believe that more people should have access to its antibacterial properties and benefit from its use.

MGO RATING -  what is it? 

What does the MGO rating on each jar mean, and why do we use this system? THE VERY HIGH SECTION, you could change that to 1000 – 1650 SUPER HIGH OR SUPER STRENGTH.

MEASURING NATURALLY OCCURRING COMPONENTS - MGO

MGO occurs naturally in authentic Manuka, and this is the component responsible for much of its non-peroxide activity (NPA).

The amount of MGO in Manuka honey can be measured directly, using specialist chemistry equipment, and it is expressed as parts per million (ppm) or mg/kg. The approximate relationship between MGO concentration and the NPA of Manuka Honey is shown in the graphic above.

Manuka Honey Properties

Manuka Honey with a high Non Peroxide Activity (NPA) rating has been found in laboratory studies to be twice as effective as other honey against staphy Infections and e-coli, the most common cause of infected wounds. It is also eight times as effective against helicobacter pylori, the bacteria which causes most stomach ulcers, and this is one the most popular uses of Manuka Honey.

Location, Location, Location.

Pictured is one of our hive sites which is located in the dark green area of the Australian map (below). This is where the high strength Manuka Honey comes from. The honey is taken directly from the hives, centrifugally spun, then filtered and bottled. Every batch is tested at the Sunshine Coast University by Dr Peter Brooks and his team after which he provides Nature's Gold with a certificate with all the relevant data for that batch. Nature's Gold allocates a batch no. and this batch no. follows the Manuka from harvesting through to the customer.

No bacteria has been found, in the laboratory, to be resistant to the Non Peroxide Activity (NPA) activity.

Australian Manuka Honey uses a rich and unique enzyme known as glucose oxidase to produce natural hydrogen peroxide. All honey contain some levels of glucose oxidase, but Manuka varieties that are high in NPA are uniquely powerful at preventing and treating bacterial infections.

The Waikato Honey Research Unit at the University of Waikato in New Zealand, which first discovered active Manuka back in the early 1990s, also found that medical Manuka Honey also contains other non-peroxide, antibacterial components as well. These components are uniquely important because they are not broken down by the body's catalase enzyme system in the same way that hydrogen peroxide is, which makes Manuka Honey far more powerful medicinally than other forms of honey.