Several types of honey are produced in Waikura Valley, including Bush Blend, Rewarewa and Manuka Honey. The most prominent and important honey is Manuka Honey.
As the Waikura Valley is located near the East Cape and has one of the highest UMF factors in the country, the Manuka Honey produced here is a unique product.
UMF stands for Unique Manuka Factor and indicates the antibacterial effect which is based on the ingredient methylglyoxal. This substance is produced by dehydration of the dihydroxyacetone contained in the flower in the honeycomb. It is not yet fully understood why the Manuka bushes from this region have a higher than average UMF factor, but the unspoiled nature and fertile soil are sure to be playing a role. These healing powers were discovered by local Maori many years ago and are gaining more and more importance today.
Manuka has long been considered as a weed for in the region but now has high production values and is the base of a whole industry that compliments sustainable farming practices.
After the honey is harvested it is centrifuged to get it out of the honey comb. The special chemical composition of Manuka Honey allows it to be separated from other types of honey. This is followed by analysis to classify the honey into the different UMF classes.
The honey is collected and produced by a local beekeeping company, which has a lot of experience in this field.