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Tabloid calls for active ingredient test

Tabloid calls for active ingredient test

Thursday, May 29, 2008. —

A new test for manuka honey’s active anti-bacterial ingredient should be adopted as an industry standard, says a tabloid newspaper distributed today to suppliers, distributors and consumers.

The tabloid Manuka Expose´ says the manuka honey industry needs to replace its UMF test with MGO™ manuka honey, which measures the naturally-occuring anti-bacterial constituent methylglyoxal.

Manuka Expose´ is published by Manuka Health New Zealand Ltd which earlier this year launched MGO™ manuka honey.

In an article “Be Honest With Consumers”, Manuka Health chief executive Kerry Paul responds to criticism of methylglyoxal measurement by the developer of the UMF test, Professor Peter Molan of the University of Waikato.

“UMF has not been well-explained to the market and consumers can’t understand it,” he says, “while MGO™ manuka honey is a straightforward measurement of the ‘active ingredient’ which people relate to.”

“Multiple MGO™ manuka honey tests on the same sample produce the same results each time, but this doesn’t happen with UMF, which has been proven unreliable and a source of tension between beekeepers and manufacturers.

“Despite Dr Molan’s attempts to discredit MGO™ manuka honey, a scientific paper by another University of Waikato academic will later this year confirm methylglyoxal is the dominant antibacterial constituent of manuka honey .

“UMF has served the industry well for many years by providing an element of quality assurance,” Mr Paul says. “However, scientific progress has made it obsolete and the industry now needs to adopt MGO™ manuka honey as its standard measurement.”

Mr Paul says Dr Molan “more than any other person or company, has been responsible for the development of the manuka honey industry”.

“However, by continuing to defend the testing system he helped develop in the face of scientific advances which supercede it, he does a disservice to himself and the industry.”

A digital version of Manuka Expose´ is available online at


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