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Made in New Zealand | Regenerative Foresting | Innovative Products

We draw on the rich history of mānuka and make it accessible to the world.

Manuka - Skincare - Health


Here's where we'll answer any sticky questions, dispel a few myths and generally clear the air…

what are the benefits of manuka honey?

Special properties of Manuka honey are widely known, and many have been scientifically tested. Due to NZ food regulations, we can’t make any claims about therapeutic or medical benefit. We have heard from our valued customers all the wonderful ways they use our honey for their overall wellbeing. We encourage everyone to try it for themselves.

 where does manuka honey come from?

Manuka is a Maori word for a scrubby tree with the convoluted Latin name of Leptospermum scoparium. A native in New Zealand, it grows throughout the country, in the drier climate, both the North and South Islands. It’s also an important plant for regenerating eroded soil. By creating shade and shelter, it’s like a natural nursery for slower, more delicate native plants.

why is Manuka so unique

Manuka honey is unique because of the NPA 'non-peroxide activity' All honey has hydrogen peroxide (HPA) naturally occurring which gives most honeys a mild antibiotic quality. NPA 'non-peroxide activity' is unique to Manuka Honey.

are you buying the correct activity?

Watch this video as to what activity is in Manuka Honey. The Difference Between peroxide and non-peroxide activity

how long does honey keep for?

Honey doesn't really 'expire'. As long as it’s stored properly, kept away from too much heat, your honey will last well beyond its ‘best before’ date.

what do I do if my honey goes sugary!

Honey naturally crystallises, especially when it’s a bit chilly. It’s still fine to eat – place your jar in a warm spot will soften those granules away.

can the honey be used for cooking?

Honey is a pantry staple for your cooking. Great for glazing, a natural preservative for pickles and sauces, it also retains moisture for deliciously dense, moist cakes, with a touch of colour. Foodies love Manuka honey! It has also been used to replace sugar in drinks and baking.

how is manuka honey made?

Although we would LOVE to take credit we have to have give all the glory to our honeybee friends.

Our job is to gently extract the honey from the honeycomb, and store in a safe way, before we bottle it up for our customer, you!

how do you harvest it?

Our authentic Manuka honey is found in Northland’s most remote locations. We do all we can to avoid damaging or disrupting our bees’ native bush home. Often the best way to access these pristine areas is by gently lifting hives in and out using helicopters.

how do you use manuka honey?

The are many creative ways to use Manuka honey. For breakfast on toast, drizzled over porridge or in your tea/hot drink is great when it’s cold out. We even know of people who have a spoonful before they exercise for a quick, natural energy boost. It also has been used in homemade beauty products, and can be used in all sorts of cooking as a natural sugar.

why is it so expensive, compared to other honeys?

Manuka trees grow in very remote wild parts of New Zealand and this makes it a challenge for us to to harvest our hives. The expertise required to harvest our honey is high. Honey bees too have to work harder to extract nectar from Manuka flowers - in comparison to nectar they extract for more common honey varieties like clover or pasture honey. The average yield per hive per season is 23kg where as if you placed that hive on a paddock of clover or pasture, you’d get anything up to 40-80 kg per hive by comparison.

Manuka only blooms for a very short period (4-8 weeks) and our yield is also impacted by climatic conditions. High concentration Manuka honey is rare which is why hive placement is so important to us and why we independently test and rate our Manuka honey so consumers are guaranteed they’re getting the real deal. It really is about supply and demand. 

Some honey makers use UMF (Unique Manuka Factor) to measure their honey. We use the MGO rating number because this is proportional to its antibacterial potency. That’s why we test and guarantee the MGO level in your honey. 

what is the MGO rating?

MGO ratings refer to the level of Methyglyoxal in the honey. Scientific evidence has confirmed that Methylglyoxal as one the key compound naturally occurring in New Zealand Honey

why we use MGO

We use MGO because it’s easy-to-understand antibacterial activity. Up until now there has been a major misunderstanding of the relationship between different levels of antibacterial activity in Manuka honey. It has always been assumed that for example, a honey with a non-peroxide antibacterial activity (NPA) of 20 is twice as potent as one with a rating of NPA 10, but that is in fact not correct. Here Peter Molan explains the true Relationship of NPA and MG Levels in his research.

can i eat manuka honey when i'm pregnant?

Yes, Manuka honey is safe to eat, both while pregnant and breastfeeding.

can kids eat manuka honey?

Yes, but please do not feed any type of honey to little ones younger than 12 months old


If there is a question you have that we have not covered above, please feel free to email us at and we will be in touch.

Nga mihi, The Kai Ora Team