New information leads to a small change in mānuka honey definition

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Media contact: MPI media team

Telephone: 029 894 0328

Email: media@mpi.govt.nz

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) has reissued the General Requirements for Bee Products Export Notice.

The revised Notice adjusts the level of a chemical marker known as 2'-MAP from greater than or equal to 5 mg/kg, to greater than or equal to 1 mg/kg for the definition for multifloral mānuka honey. There is no change to the definition for monofloral mānuka honey, which remains at equal or greater than 5mg/kg for 2'-MAP. The implementation date of the notice remains 5 February 2018.

The change means that the legal claim challenging the definition by New Zealand Beekeeping has been resolved.

"Late last week, as part of its legal claim, New Zealand Beekeeping provided additional information about the impact of the definition on multifloral honey. Also, we were presented with a summary of new analysed test results from an industry science group.

"This information showed that the definition for identifying multifloral mānuka honey was initially set too conservatively and would exclude legitimate multifloral honey," says Bryan Wilson, MPI's deputy director-general regulation and assurance.

"We hope the industry will see this as a signal of MPI's ongoing commitment to a collaborative science programme focused on continuous improvement to the science that supports the definition of mānuka honey."

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