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RSS FeedsMolecules, Vol. 27, Pages 3282: Exploring the Chemical Properties and Biological Activity of Four New Zealand Monofloral Honeys to Support the Māori Vision and Aspirations (Molecules)

 
 

20 may 2022 10:07:30

 
Molecules, Vol. 27, Pages 3282: Exploring the Chemical Properties and Biological Activity of Four New Zealand Monofloral Honeys to Support the Māori Vision and Aspirations (Molecules)
 


Honey production and export are significant contributors to the Aotearoa New Zealand economy, generating over 400 million dollars in revenue. Its main export is mānuka (Leptospermum scoparium) honey, which has a high commercial value due to its medicinal properties that are linked to its unique chemical composition. The compound methylglyoxal (MGO) has been identified as the main floral marker and is used as a quality indicator, often labelled as unique mānuka factor (UMF). However, the high demand for mānuka honey creates pressure on beekeepers and may have negative ecological consequences by favouring extensive mānuka monocultures to the detriment of other native species. There are other honeys native to New Zealand, such as kāmahi (Weinmannia racemosa), kānuka (Kunzea ericoides), rātā (Metrosideros robusta) and rewarewa (Knightia excelsa), that also have medicinal properties; however, they are less well known in the local and global market. Indigenous Māori communities envision the production and commercialization (locally and internationally) of these honeys as an opportunity to generate income and secure a sustainable future in alignment with their worldview (Te Ao Māori) and values (tikanga Māori). Diversifying the market could lead to a more sustainable income for beekeepers and reduce pressure on Māori and the conservation land, while supporting indigenous communities to realize their vision and aspirations. This manuscript provides an extensive review of the scientific literature, technical literature and traditional knowledge databases describing the plants of interest and their traditional medicinal uses (rongoā) and the chemical properties of each honey, potential floral markers and their biological activity. For each honey type, we also identify knowledge gaps and potential research avenues. This information will assist Māori beekeepers, researchers, consumers and other stakeholders in making informed decisions regarding future research on and the production, marketing and consumption of these native monofloral honeys.


 
62 viewsCategory: Biochemistry, Chemistry, Molecular Biology
 
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