UMF® stands for 'Unique Manuka Factor', and is a quality trademark owned and managed by the UMF® Honey Association. The UMF® grading system evaluates natural markers found in Manuka honey.
For millennia Honey has been regarded as a special food; its use espoused in numerous ancient texts from around the globe. This ancient knowledge has now been proven by scientific research.
The first scientific studies into the special properties of honey took place at the end of the 19th century. Some of this early research pointed to honey’s acidity or its osmotic effect as being the source of the special properties of honey.
During the mid-20th-century scientists identified enzymes present in nectar and introduced by bees in the ripening process of honey. Scientists then discovered that when honey was diluted these enzymes gave the honey distinctive properties. However, it was also discovered that these enzymes quickly broke down with exposure to light.
In 1981 Dr. Peter Molan began his research into the unique properties of honey. His research led to the discovery of properties in some honey that were not based on any of the previously known factors; of these varieties, New Zealand Manuka honey appeared to be the most promising.
Research to identify the components of Manuka Honey responsible for its unique properties began in 1990. Since then numerous studies have been undertaken around the globe, and a number of these components have been identified.
In 2013 the UMF® Honey Association began work on the Manuka ID Project; the primary aim of this ongoing project is to determine a profile of Manuka Honey. The association has collected samples of nectar and honey from all of New Zealand and is utilising state of the chemical profiling to develop a chemical fingerprint of Manuka Honey.
This fingerprint is now being utilised for the UMF® grading system. To qualify for a UMF® grading honey must contain DHA (dihydroxyacetone), Leptosperin, and Methylglyoxal. The current grading system utilises the quantity of Methylglyoxal present in the honey to provide the rating number.
The UMF® mark is registered in 46 countries and has the backing of IANZ Accreditation. UMF® Manuka honey and its unique properties have been covered by media around the world, including the BBC and CNN. Today, it is regarded by many as the world’s premier honey.
As members of the UMF Honey Association, you can trust the rating on our label. The UMF® Honey Association contract AsureQuality Ltd. to check on the claims we make on our labels and that product is tested to the standard required.
We are happy to provide laboratory test results for our UMF®Manuka honey when requested by a customer.
AsureQuality has been contracted by the UMF® Honey Association to audit our factory to ensure we are compliant to the UMF® quality standard production facility requirements and current New Zealand regulatory requirements.
UMF® Manuka honey from Cammell's Honey is traceable from the apiary to the jar and traceability is audited by AsureQuality.
The UMF® Honey Association regularly checks samples from the marketplace to ensure they are from the stated origin. This helps protect the consumer and provides the assurance of traceability.
The Leptospermum scoparium, is native to New Zealand; commonly known as the Manuka bush is the source of UMF® Manuka honey.
Beehives are placed in areas where there is an abundance of Manuka. The nectar collected from some Manuka contains special compounds that make UMF® Manuka unique.
UMF® Manuka honey is tested at independent laboratories to determine its strength and UMF® rating.
The tests utilised by members of the UMF® Honey Association are internationally recognised biological and chemical methods.
Our UMF® Manuka honey products are packed and labelled according to the rules of the UMF® Manuka Honey Association.