#honey#manuka#manuka honey#umf

Explaining UMF® Ratings for Mānuka Honey

Explaining UMF® Ratings for Mānuka Honey

You see it all the time on jars of honey… UMF®... However, many people don’t know exactly what it means. Well, look no further! We’re here to explain.

Now, every company seems to have a different way of rating their honey. At Happy Valley, we use the UMF® rating. UMF stands for Unique Mānuka Factor and is a grading system specifically for Mānuka manufacturers.


The rating is based upon 3 exclusive characteristics of Mānuka honey, which are:

  1. MGO (methylglyoxal): One of the components that’s responsible for Mānuka Honey’s antibacterial activity. Mānuka honey’s with suitable levels of MGO (in turn a good UMF® rating) can assist with wound healing and the prevention infections.

MGO is measured in UMF® grading system, but some companies exclusively use MGO grading.

NPA (non-peroxide activity), which refers to antibacterial activity, is also measured in UMF.


  1. Leptosperin: The higher this is, the greater the presence of other unique Mānuka properties. Referred to as the ‘mānukaness’ of the honey.

It helps us to know that honey is genuine, unadulterated Mānuka.


  1. DHA (dihydroxyacetone): A prerequisite for MGO. High levels of DHA present more potential for the honey to increase in MGO.


These characteristics are all tested by an independent laboratory where all 3 must be present. Additionally, the honey undergoes an HMF test, to ensure that the honey hasn’t been heat abused.

Our honey is rated 5+, 10+, 15+, 18+ or 20+ based on the potency and antimicrobial properties of each jar. The higher the number, the more potent and higher antimicrobial properties.

  • 5+: Use to maintain health as part of your everyday routine.
  • 10+: Elevated antibacterial properties to help you build a healthy immune system.
  • 15+: High antibacterial properties, should be used when you have flu symptoms, digestive troubles and skin issues.
  • 18+: Very high antibacterial properties, making it ideal for first aid kits.
  • 20+: Our highest UMF® level for maximum antibacterial properties. To be taken when needed.


So, what’s the point of all this? Well, the UMF® rating system safeguards customers from Mānuka honey that isn’t genuine. Happy Valley is a member of the UMF® association, so customers can be ensured that they can trust our Mānuka product and its quality.