Frequently asked questions about Manuka Honey

Manuka Honey with Methylglyoxal (MGO) – Questions & Answers

Below are the most frequently asked questions about Manuka Honey.

What does Methylglyoxal (MGO) mean?

MGO means Methylglyoxal and is one of the most important compounds in Manuka Honey.

What does Methylglyoxal (MGO) do?

Methylglyoxal is solely responsible for the stable, very strong unique bioactivity that is unique to the New Zealand Manuka Honey.

Why measure for MGO?

Measuring MGO is the standard used by the Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) in New Zealand. Methylglyoxal is a measurable substance.

Why Manuka New Zealand?

Learn more about the quality guarantee of Manuka new Zealand so that you know that you are buying genuine and original New Zealand Manuka Honey. Manuka New Zealand only produces raw, unfiltered, unpasteurized monofloral MGO Manuka Honey.


Manuka New Zealand only produces monofloral MGO Manuka Honey. This means that the honey comes exclusively from the Manuka shrub / tree.

How do I use Manuka Honey?

Manuka Honey can be consumed in many different ways.

  • In a smootie, in yogurt, on bread, on a cracker, in dishes etc etc.
  • However, tea is a shame because all the unique qualities are destroyed by heating.
  • Manuka Honey can of course also be consumed directly from the pot if one wants to experience the pure taste of real Manuka Honey by consuming a few teaspoons daily.
  • Dissolved in water (for example, a tablespoon in a shake cup, or a teaspoon in a large glass)

How do I know if my Manuka Honey is real?

Measuring = Knowing.

Manuka New Zealand measures and tests all its honey in laboratories. Manuka New Zealand, characterized by the presence of the golden Manuka New Zealand MGO label, guarantees a real, authentic Manuka Honey.

Manuka New Zealand only produces real monofloral Manuka Honey where the following specifications and parameters are included and where IANZ laboratories check for:

  • colour
  • conductivity
  • taste
  • aroma
  • presence of the Manuka-type pollen
  • presence of MGO, DHA and HMF.

Where does Manuka New Zealand pack its Manuka Honey?

Manuka New Zealand produces and packages all its Manuka Honey in its production center in New Zealand. All packaging is BPA free.

Why does Manuka New Zealand produce Manuka Honey up to MGO 550+?

For the simple reason that bees almost do not make higher qualities. It is already very unique and special that bees make MGO 550+ Manuka Honey. MGO values higher than MGO 550+ are rare and are therefore not naturally produced by the bees. MGO values above 550+ may have been heated and have therefore been artificially altered. It may also indicate old Manuka Honey.

Producing Manuka Honey with MGO 1000+ is very expensive. Manuka New Zealand also produces MGO 1000+ Manuka Honey in very limited editions because of the limited availability.

Why does Manuka New Zealand only use MGO values?

Measuring Methylglyoxal (MGO) is a solid scientific test method where there is only a margin of error of less than 2%. Testing for and on Methylglyoxal (MGO) is an obligation from the New Zealand government. Manuka New Zealand measures all its honey based on the measurable substances; MGO, DHA and HMF.

What do the terms Active, UMF, NPA, 5+, 10+, 15+, 20+ and 25+ mean?

In the early days of research into the unique effect of Manuka Honey, the researchers could only make a comparison with the unique activity based on a comparison with Phenol (phenol). Phenol (phenol) is used in hospitals to kill bacteria. Terms such as Active, NPA, 5+, 10+, 15+, 20+ and 25+ are therapeutic terms that refer to the comparable concentration of Phenol in Honey that are not permitted by law from New Zealand. This creates a lot of confusion among consumers. UMF confers Unique Manuka Factor (UMF®). This grade has been discovered by Peter Molan. UMF values are not directly measured, because UMF is not a substance, and are calculated on the basis of Phenol (phenol) solutions.


  1. It should be noted that phenol equivalence measurements on Manuka Honey products and labels, such as 5+, 10+, 15+, 20+ and 25+, are therapeutic claims. From January 2016, these are no longer permitted under the New Zealand Food Standards Code. This means that brands with such designations are not packaged in New Zealand.
  2. NPA (Non Peroxide Activity) is prohibited by the New Zealand government any longer to be used on packaging

Peter Molan, discoverer of UMF value.

Why are there such large price differences in Manuka Honey? Isn’t Manuka Honey Manuka Honey?

Manuka Honey is not always Manuka Honey!

The Consumers’ Association has conducted an extensive investigation into Manuka Honey, which has shown that many brands apply fraud. This is done by incorrectly mentioning Methylglyoxal values, incorrect labeling, selling very low quality Manuka Honey as very good and much more.

The values ​​of Manuka Honey are determined by the natural presence of both MGO, DHA and HMF. If MGO is high, the value of DHA is also high and the value of HMF is relatively low.

Manufacturers mislead consumers by making them think that they are buying high-quality Manuka Honey, but are not actually doing so. The HMF values ​​automatically increase due to, among other things, artificial heating of Manuka Honey. By measuring HMF values ​​in laboratories, one can find out if a honey has been heated. By artificially heating low quality Manuka Honey, which increases the Methylglyoxal values, it is possible to sell Manuka Honey more expensive than it actually is. This has also been demonstrated by the Consumers’ Association.

Manufacturers mislead consumers by:

Incorrect labeling
Label indicates Manuka Honey; however, tests show that it hardly contains Manuka Honey.

Incorrect UMF or Methylglyoxal values
Label indicates Active 24+ / UMF 25+ or MGO 850+ Manuka Honey; however, tests have shown that it only has values of 30 mg / kg Methylglyoxal.

Manuka Honey heated too strongly
Label indicates 850 mg / kg Methylglyoxal, without informing the consumer that the honey has been heated (measurable by measuring HMF).
This causes the Methylglyoxal value to rise unnaturally and all active ingredients to disappear.

Cheap Manuka Honey as an expensive sell
A combination of both an incorrect label, overly heated manuka honey and unclear indication on the label about the values.

Important measurable ingredients / compounds in Manuka Honey

MGO; Methylglyoxal; is measured in mg / kg.
The ingredient that makes Manuka Honey so unique.

DHA; Dihydroxyacetone; is the precursor of Methylglyoxal in nectar; is measured in mg / kg.
Determines the final amount of Methylglyoxal in a honey

HMF; Hydroxymethylfurfural; the indicator for heating honey; the higher this value, the hotter the honey has been; is measured in mg / kg.
Dust that is released when honey is heated. Important indication for the quality.

Can anyone use Manuka Honey?

Manuka Honey; a blessing for everyone.

Manuka Honey can be used by anyone; however, not by children under 1 year and people with allergies to bee products.
Manuka Honey can also be consumed during pregnancy.

© Copyright Manuka New Zealand B.V (EUROPE) 2019 - 2020 - All rights reserved. Manuka New Zealand guarantees the unique quality of its Manuka Honey and is recognizable by the Manuka New Zealand logo and the gold MGO guarantee indication. | Manuka New Zealand Manuka Honey; processed and packaged in New Zealand; Authentic Manuka Honey from New Zealand.