Members Update – March 2016

Members Update – March 2016

Showcasing the UMFHA’s Science Programme in China

The Association has accepted an invitation to present details of its Manuka ID science programme at the China Bee Products Industry Conference 2016 which takes place from 15-16 March in Chengdu China. Organised by the CFNA, this Conference is a prestigious event that is highly regarded internationally by those operating in the bee products industry. Attended by top industry figures, academics and leaders in their respective fields, this is a unique and important opportunity to showcase our worldleading science programme directly to key decision-makers, regulatory bodies and influencers. Speaking at the Conference will be Analytica Laboratories executive director Dr Terry Braggins who has played a key role in our science programme and the Association’s Administrator John Rawcliffe. The following is the abstract for the presentation.

Internationally, Manuka Honey commands premium prices, however, there is a limited supply. This could lead to passing-off of other New Zealand or non-NZ honeys as Manuka. Concern over this has led to the development of a method to differentiate New Zealand Manuka Honey using chemical profiling. The UMF Honey Association, in collaboration with Analytica Laboratories and a number of overseas research institutions, have over the last four years researched the use of chemical profiling to quantify Manuka Honey for the consumer.

The key to this research was understanding the relationship between nectar and honey. The techniques of collecting authentic Manuka nectar from the flower were proposed by Dr Jonathan Stephens and Dr Ralf Schlothauer, while the collection of authentic Manuka Honey was commissioned by the UMF Honey Association. The analysis techniques were developed by Dr Terry Braggins of Analytica Laboratories. The relationship between the nectar and the honey has provided the basis from which the use of mass spectrometry technology has identified chemical markers that are characteristic of genuine Manuka honey.The use of statistical tools has provided the mechanisms to quantify the proportion of a New Zealand honey from a Manuka floral source. This body of research will be able to assist in determining provenance, the detection of adulteration, and providing a key to understanding the chemical profile of the honey, so enabling future research.

We will be unveiling the science behind the Manuka Classification system and detailing how a range of unique signature compounds , including Leptosperin, will be help revolutionise the industry by providing robust international testing of genuine Manuka Honey. At the same time, we will be showcasing the Manuka Indicator fluorescence unit developed in New Zealand to test for the presence of Leptosperin in Manuka Honey products. Under the UMF® quality mark, we are able to ensure consumers are receiving the purity and quality of genuine Manuka honey. We will be promoting the UMFHA’s attendance at this event, along with updates, via the Association’s social media accounts in China. We invite all members and their key contacts to attend this prestigious international event.

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