20 Apr 2009

High hopes for new manuka honey test

4:56 am on 20 April 2009

A Gisborne beekeeper who supplies active manuka honey for therapeutic use says a new test developed by Waikato University scientists will take some of the guess-work out of the business.

Waikato University chemists have developed a test that will allow beekeepers to identify which active manuka honey has the potential to develop the highest levels of anti-bacterial activity.

The test can also be used to identify which trees will produce the most active nectar.

Beekeeper Barry Foster, who's main income comes from manuka honey, says that's going to remove a lot of uncertainty.

If the test is more accurate than the current unique manuka factor test, he says it will benefit beekeepers.

Mr Foster says that will reduce the chances of active manuka honey ending up as table honey, and vice versa.