TAI TOKERAU HONEY Ltd
Here at Tai Tokerau Honey Ltd we are very proud of our where we come from, who we are, and the quality of the products we produce, and the best way to share that with you, the consumer, was to brand our honey the same way - that way, when you buy a jar of Tai Tokerau Honey you know exactly where this unique, high-quality product is coming from.
Due to the transient existence of humans on this earth, we cannot claim ownership of the land or its resources, but are simply the kaitiakitanga or guardians, charged with the care of this planet and its resources. Our ability to harvest honey is a gift and a blessing from Papatuanuku, the Earth Mother, and we should treat it with the respect it deserves. Of course, we also like to think that our honey is some of the best in the country!
As kaitiakitanga we have a strong affiliation with the whenua (land). Maori have occupied this land for thousands of years, increasing the knowledge of the animals, the plants, the wind, the water, the earth and the links between it all. This connection, coupled with our intimate knowledge of the whenua and our ability to interpret the signs of Paptuanuku, allows us to gather Mānuka honey. Local knowledge plays are large part in our operations, and local traditions are also observed, with kaumatua (elders) often asked to bless the land where our hives are located, and where necessary, the hives before honey is harvested.
The beauty of this honey is that it is produced with the future in mind! The journey from hive to jar has been as natural as possible!
UMF® mānuka honey
Mānuka honey is produced from the nectar of the flower of the Mānuka bush, Leptospermum scoparium, which is indigenous to New Zealand and Australia. This produces a honey with a unique flavour and characteristics, that is becoming more and more popular worldwide.
As the demand for Mānuka honey increases, steps have been taken to protect the industry and to ensure that all products are true to label. As such, Tai Tokerau Honey Ltd are active members of the UMF Honey Association, this is an independent organisation that develop industry-leading standards, quality control and consumers can be confident that when they purchase UMF graded honey they are buying genuine New Zealand Mānuka honey.
The UMF grading system ranges from 5+ up to 25+ and occasionally higher - however the higher the grade the more rare the honey becomes! The higher the number, the higher the quality.
The name mānuka
Here at Tai Tokerau Honey Ltd, we are firm believers that the name “Mānuka” is a Māori name, and fully support the efforts of the UMF Association and the Mānuka Honey Appellation Society to protect the term “Mānuka” and it’s importance to our industry.
The Oxford Engish Dictionary actually recognises that the use of the term “mānuka” in the English language is borrowing it from Māori, and notes that the present form is probably unique to Māori (the inherited part of the word is the morpheme ‘nuka’ which has connections to Polynesia, but the combination' ‘mānuka’ was generated by Māori). It is important to note that the word “Mānuka” only applies to the plant varieties endemic to New Zealand, but also botanically, all plants currently grouped under the heading Leptospermum scoparium belong to strains that are endemic to Aotearoa.
Crucially, the intent is to protect the term ‘mānuka honey’ so that it is defined to only permit honey from New Zealand to qualify to use the term. We do not want to admit or imply that there might be mānuka honey from anywhere else. This involves explicitly establishing in overseas regulators’ mind the link between ‘mānuka’ as a Maori word with exclusively New Zealand links, and the honey produced from manuka nectar (Leptospermum Scoparium) in New Zealand.