Today we bring you a recent video made by TVNZ to show the production of Manuka essential oil and Manuka honey.
Both products are produced in the East Cape region of New Zealand’s North Island.
Much of this land was originally forest, cleared over 100 years ago to make way for pasture to farm sheep and cattle, however the manuka plants continued to repopulate the pasture areas. For many years farmers considered manuka to be a weed and spent a lot of money trying to clear it from the land.
Then as Manuka honey from the flowers of manuka became recognised for its antibacterial properties, researchers began to look more closely at the plant material, the leaves and small twigs and the essential oil that they contained.
Studies showed that the antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral activity of the essential oil exclusively from this region in New Zealand was 10,000 times stronger than Manuka honey. That is why we label it as East Cape Manuka oil and include it in soap skin creams and oil blends.
Manuka honey, particularly from areas like this where it is almost the only source of nectar when it is in flower has very high ‘unique manuka factor’ or UMF certification which makes it exceptional for wound healing. We also use this special honey in anti-aging and remedial creams because it is so good for the skin.
As you will see in the video much of this East Cape land is in ownership of multiple descendants of the original Maori owners who are now employed in the Manuka industry which is a wonderful outcome for the economic development of the region.
The Manuka story is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xzjgIr8pnMs