Comvita, a New Zealand-based global leader in Manuka honey, celebrates its 45th anniversary with new packaging across North America, and illuminating “Real Manuka” in a campaign aimed at educating consumers on what to look for when purchasing honey. 

The honey packaging's refreshed look features elevated and sophisticated darker earth tones and gold to echo the gold standard of the product and complement the natural hue of the prized New Zealand export. Comvita’s UMF Manuka Honey rebrandshows off its raw, wild and unpasteurized attributes, includes its MGO levels and nods to its rich heritage with a message from living co-founder Alan Bougen on the back. The new package design is differentiated from other brands in the competitive Manuka set. In addition, Comvita is now the only Manuka Honey that is certified gluten-free by GFCO.

The interest in Manuka is largely based on its unique non-peroxide (widely known as antibacterial) activity. Manuka Honey labels can feature several different rating systems. Some of these include words such as “Bio-Active,” “Active” or “Factors,” combined with numbers suggesting their quality, or potency levels. These are self-created, lacking independent testing or standards, which has caused retail trade and consumer confusion, making it difficult for shoppers to decipher between a quality Manuka and a lower grade blend, possessing minimal non-peroxide activity.

The gold standard in Manuka Honey is UMF, which is independently certified for the three key compounds, ensuring the honey is genuine Manuka. Comvita is a licensee of UMFHA (Unique Manuka Factor Honey Association) and strictly adheres to the UMF rating system that measures Leptosperin, DHA (Dihydroxyacetone) and MGO (Methylglyoxal). 

There are three main recommended criteria for shoppers when making a Manuka purchase for the real deal::

● Sourced, packed and labeled in New Zealand. New Zealand’s Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) recently set new standards requiring a minimum threshold for key markers before it can be exported as “Manuka Honey.”

● Is Monofloral, from the Manuka flower (not a “blend” of cheaper floral sources).

● Has the UMF independent certification, guaranteeing specific levels of Manuka’s three key compounds, also ensuring it has been sourced, packed and labeled in New Zealand and meets MPI’s standards. UMF-certified products are available from UMF 5+ intended for daily health up to a rare UMF 20+, containing the highest concentration of unique compounds.