Tasmanian Beekeepers Association president Lindsay Bourke says he is unsurprised by new research showing Australian manuka honey is just as medically powerful as manuka honey from New Zealand. Studies released from Sydney's University of Technology last week showed that more than 16 per cent of Australian manuka honeys were more potent than their Trans-Tasman counterparts.
Manuka honey, which is produced by bees foraging on tea trees, contains an antibacterial agent called methylglyoxal which is known to help heal wounds and burns. Mr Bourke said methylglyoxal concentration was the only way to accurately measure a honey's activity.
“We have it tested all the time because we get more money for the active ones, whenever we get some manuka from one site we get it tested,” Mr Bourke said.
“All honey will heal wounds but some heal a lot better, the manukas and the leatherwoods are very good for healing wounds.”
Mr Bourke said far from being less potent, Tasmanian honey was likely more active than New Zealand honey.
“Our leatherwood is down in the rainforest, it’s not in the paddocks and things where most of the New Zealand manuka is, it’s all local around their paddocks.
“If you're going to have organic honey you have to be at least five kilometres away from human habitation because humans are the things that corrupt organics.
“New Zealanders can’t have that but Tasmanians can because our sites are way out in the woop woop, we’re so lucky.” The tea tree is native to Australia and New Zealand.