bees, honey and other sticky subjects

Monday, February 09, 2004

Manuka hokus pokus

Manuka honey — famed for its curative powers especially for wounds — has come under scrutiny by the New Zealand Consumers’ Institute. Apparently, there is more Manuka honey sold than is actually produced. It seems that a dollop in a jar has miraculous effects on the label, if not the patient. And since Manuka honey sells at about four times the price of other honeys, it’s not that surprising.

Manuka is foraged from the blossom of the tea tree Leptospermum scoparium (the leaves of which Captain Cook and Co made themselves feel at home with a frequent cuppa).

While honey is generally regarded as having all sorts of healing effects, Manuka honey has long been regarded as having special anti-bacterial properties and has been studied at Waikato University for two decades.

Honey New Zealand has just signed a NZ$440 million deal to supply a Japanese health products company with Manuka and other bee products. I bet they will be getting the real thing!


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