29 Aug 2013

About time NZ dealt to fake manuka honey - Goldsmith

7:04 pm on 29 August 2013

A coalition helping to develop Maori potential in the manuka honey trade says it's time for the industry to take control and deal with companies selling fake New Zealand manuka honey.

The Bee Products Standards Council is urging honey producers to reach agreement over the testing of manuka honey in the wake of a labelling scandal in Britain.

Britain's Food Standards Agency has issued a nationwide warning about misleading and illegal claims made on the labels of jars of faked New Zealand manuka honey.

Project director of the Miere or honey coalition, Victor Goldsmith, says there are very few Maori bee-keepers.

However, he says Maori landowners in particular, many of whom lease land to manuka honey bee-keepers have been worried about fake labelling.

Mr Goldsmith says a lack of industry-wide control has allowed rogue players to come in and use the brand manuka honey, which is the most expensive in the world, to sell their products.

The Miere coalition was formed in February through a formal agreement by three Maori organisations, the Federation of Maori Authorities, Poutama Trust and Te Tumu Paeroa.