Mānuka South is selling jars of honey rated UMF 28+ for $1800. A UMF is a Unique Mānuka Factor, and gradings usually go from 5+ through to 20+. The company’s rare honey is rated higher due to its rarity.
It comes from areas in manuka-dense Northland, where the plant flowers for only six weeks each year. It’s so hard to get to the product that some hives and beekeepers are moved in and out via helicopter.
Sales manager of Mānuka South Sam Haines has said only 300 jars of 250g will be sold. At $1800 a jar, the honey will bring in $540,000. Most jars have already been pre-sold to retailers, so Haines is confident they will sell.
At the price, a piece of toast made with the honey could be worth around $50.
The jars are strongly mānuka flavoured with a silky texture, and come in an oak display case with a gold spoon. The most likely buyers will tourists looking for a souvenir of their time in New Zealand.