Eastport, NY (PressExposure) April 22, 2009 -- Honey had been used for medical purposes for thousands of years, prior to the advent of modern-day medicine. Honey's medicinal qualities are attributed to the presence of hydrogen peroxide, low acidity levels, osmotic action and floral nectar components.
There are many different types of honey. The differences are predicated on the floral nectar used by the bees that produced the honey. Manuka Honey from New Zealand is used for medicinal purposes because it contains more healing properties than any other type of honey. However, not all Manuka Honey is suitable for medical use.
Manuka Honey's antibacterial potency varies from batch-to-batch. The only way to know for sure whether a particular batch of Manuka Honey is of medical grade quality, it must be laboratory tested. This is the responsibility of the company that is packaging the honey.
The only honey that should be used for medical purposes is active UMF Manuka Honey. UMF is an acronym for Unique Manuka Factor and is followed by a number which indicates the antibacterial strength of the Manuka Honey. UMF is the authorized seal and registered trademark of the Active Manuka Honey Industry in New Zealand. It can only be applied to the of honey with a laboratory test result of UMF 10 or higher (which is equivalent to 10% phenol). Results obtained from 50% dilution (low acidity test) can not be used for claiming UMF activity.
In New Zealand, Manuka Honey production is regulated by the Active Manuka Honey Industry. The UMF trademark can only be used by UMF licensed suppliers who meet set criteria which include regular monitoring and auditing of the quality of their honey. UMF Manuka Honey from a New Zealand supplier that is licensed to use the UMF trademark is the only honey guaranteed to have the special UMF healing properties and be of the same medical-grade quality that is referred to in research studies and clinical trials.
When the UMF trademark is listed on the label of a Manuka Honey jar, it is a guarantee that the Manuka Honey has the special UMF antibacterial property to the level indicated on the label (i.e. UMF 16). This guarantee only applies to honey that comes from New Zealand suppliers that are licensed to use the UMF trademark.
Genuine UMF Manuka Honey must comply with the following criteria:
- It has the UMF trademark clearly stated on the front label.
- It is packed into jars and labelled in New Zealand.
- It is from a New Zealand supplier licensed to use the UMF trademark.
- It has the supplier's license number on the label.
- It has a rating of UMF10 or higher.