Which Manuka Honey Is Best? UMF, MGO, K+ and Raw Honey Explained
During 2020, the hype around Manuka Honey boomed. We recently released a post on Manuka Honey and its benefits during the coronavirus outbreak.
As the price tag suggests, not all Manuka honey is equal. There are a lot different terms surrounding Manuka Honey such as UMF, MGO and K+ Factor, medical-grade and raw or unpasteurised and these can all help us understand the quality and features of the specific pot of honey. We wanted this article to provide all the information you need to clearly understand what these terms mean and what it means in terms of the quality of Manuka honey so that you can make an informed decision!
WHAT IS THE UMF, MGO AND K+ RATING?
UMF®, MGO and K+ Factor are all rating systems for the potency and quality of Manuka honey.
UMF® (Unique Manuka Factor) - is a registered trademark of a regulatory body - the UMF Honey Association of New Zealand. Honey producers must be a (paying) licensed member and adhere to the set criteria and standards to use the UMF rating system. The number correlates to the content of Methylglyoxyl (MG) - the higher the MG count, the higher the antibacterial activity.
MGO - is short for methylgloxyl and correlates to the strength and potency of antibacterial properties in Manuka honey.
It is important to note UMF and MGO are both trusted rating systems and their numbers can be converted to one another
e.g. UMF 10+ is the equivalent to MGO 250+ which is considered "Medium-Grade" While UMF 24+ was considered "Superior Rare High Grade".
Again, the higher the MGO rating, the higher the antibacterial activity and so the higher the quality of Manuka Honey.
Avoca uses the MGO Rating system and has a wide range of Manuka honey at all levels - you can view their extensive range and special offers by clicking here!
K+ Factor is another grading system approved by New Zealand's Ministry of Primary Industries which sets and evaluates Manuka Honey here in New Zealand. It covers a wider range of factors for Manuka Honey (rather than just its methylglyoxal content) including raw and unpasteurised honey, free of substances like antibiotics, NON-GMO, traceability back to the hive, the honey is from New Zealand and finally if the Manuka honey is multi-floral (comes from a variety of plants including the Manuka tree and other fauna) or mono-floral - made mainly from Manuka trees (Leptospermum scoparium) - which is much harder to achieve.
(Infograph via Manuka Honey Organic)