As a passionate manuka honey lover and believer in its healing powers, I have sampled nearly every manuka honey brand from the beautiful land of New Zealand during my frequent visits there. In my quest for raw manuka honey that doesn’t break the bank, I came across Wedderspoon—a brand with a longstanding reputation.
Wedderspoon offers a variety of manuka honey products at affordable prices, ranging from soothing digestive gummies to rejuvenating propolis sprays and immune-boosting lozenges. The brand ensures that every step of the process, from harvesting to packaging and labeling, is carried out in the pristine New Zealand environment.
With a presence in the UK, New Zealand, Canada, and beyond, Wedderspoon’s manuka honey has gained a loyal following worldwide. However, as we all know, lower prices often raise questions about quality and authenticity.
In this blog post, I will critically analyze Wedderspoon’s manuka honey, examining whether it lives up to the hype and if it truly deserves a spot in your pantry. By the end of this read, you will be well-armed to decide if this honey is a sweet deal or a bitter disappointment.
My Review of Wedderspoon Manuka Honey
This review will focus primarily on their KFactor 16 monofloral variety—the most popular and potent manuka honey currently available from them.
Taste and Appearance
My journey with Wedderspoon began when I first laid eyes on its beautiful color and consistency. The taste was just as captivating, with a smooth, buttery texture that was not too sweet, striking the perfect balance for my taste buds. I found it to be slightly more viscous than other brands I’ve tried, but it’s still very easy to spread. It has a minty aroma, and its color is goldish-yellow.
I’m a huge fan of yogurt and have been making my own at home for years. When I first drizzled Wedderspoon manuka honey over my homemade yogurt, it was a game changer. It’s easily the best yogurt topping I’ve ever tried, and I’ve experimented with quite a few. The honey’s unique flavor pairs beautifully with yogurt, and when you add some granola, it’s an irresistible combination.
Manuka honey is typically characterized by a slightly bitter taste and a thick, opaque appearance – traits I found evident in the UMF-licensed brands I sampled. Yet, when I had a taste of Wedderspoon’s manuka honey, I was delightfully surprised by the absence of the medicinal taste often found in other brands. Despite its thinner consistency and clearer appearance, the honey still possessed a genuine flavor that reassured me I wasn’t indulging in anything artificial or synthetic.
In the past, I used to add Wedderspoon honey to my hot tea, but then I discovered that heat might weaken its antibacterial properties. Nevertheless, I occasionally include it in my wellness regimen. However, I’ve developed a preference for UMF-certified honey as my primary choice when addressing coughs, sore throats, or even just for a delightful treat.
Initially, I was disheartened to learn that Wedderspoon’s manuka honey isn’t UMF-certified. Instead, they have their own grading system called K-Factor. I often wish there was a single grading system for Manuka honey since it’s confusing when some use KFactor, others use UMF, and some use MGO.
MGO (methylglyoxal), a natural compound with antibacterial properties, is the most common marker for Manuka honey and is measured in both UMF and MGO grading systems. On the other hand, the UMF grading system also assesses NPA (non-peroxide activity), Leptosperin, and DHA (dihydroxyacetone).
The NPA marker is directly related to the overall UMF rating, so a Manuka honey with an NPA of 18 will be UMF 18+. Leptosperin is another component found in Manuka honey and is also measured in UMF. If honey doesn’t have Leptosperin, it’s not considered Manuka. DHA, or dihydroxyacetone, is also used in the UMF grading system as it is a precursor to methylglyoxal.
The KFactor grading system is quite different from UMF and MGO since it doesn’t measure MGO, NPA, or leptosperin levels. There are three different levels of KFactor: 12, 16, and 22. It’s important not to equate KFactor 12 with UMF 10+, as both grading systems measure entirely different aspects of the honey.
Wedderspoon claims that their KFactor™ 16 is guaranteed to meet or exceed the Monofloral Manuka honey standard set by New Zealand’s Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI). Additionally, KFactor™ 12 is guaranteed to meet or surpass the Multifloral Manuka honey standard established by the MPI. The details of the MPI’s standards for Manuka honey can be found on this page.
Purity and Authenticity
Wedderspoon’s approach to manuka honey is very different from any other brand on the market; they believe in minimal processing. They don’t have a UMF license, nor are they a part of the UMF Honey Association. They say that their system complies with the Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) definition of manuka honey.
Although I’m not able to see the NPA levels with the KFactor grading system, Wedderspoon’s website provides some assurance about their honey’s quality. They claim it’s raw, monofloral, unpasteurized, and glyphosate-free. Additionally, their honey goes through a triple-filtering process and is non-GMO project verified.
In terms of safety, Wedderspoon’s honey meets the Safe Quality Food (SQF) standard, which means it’s been tested to ensure it’s free of contaminants. Despite some controversy surrounding the authenticity of their Manuka honey, I can say from personal experience that it tastes quite similar to UMF-grade products I’ve tried before. It might not be as strong, which could indicate less genuine Manuka pollination, but overall, I feel like I’m getting a seemingly good honey at a fair price.
They have a strong online presence with over 18,000 reviews on Amazon, and they actively engage with their audience on social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram. Their customers often praise their products, attesting to their quality and taste.
One aspect of Wedderspoon that piqued my interest is their dedication to supporting honeybee conservation. They sponsor a hive at The Honeybee Conservancy at the Rodale Institute, a response to the major health problems that have been affecting the honeybee population in North America since 2012. This shows their commitment to the environment and the sustainability of the honey industry.
Furthermore, Wedderspoon is proud to be a partner of the Mind Body Green Community, which is a testament to their focus on promoting health and wellness. They promise that their honey is free from antibiotics, glyphosate, and pesticides, ensuring a pure and natural product for their customers.
While I’m not particularly fond of their unique grading system, the KFactor, I appreciate their dedication to being transparent with their customers. I also like that they have a wide variety of products, from specialty honey to other manuka-related products like throat drops and propolis sprays.
Packaging and Size
When it comes to the packaging of Wedderspoon Manuka honey, I must say that I find it both practical and visually appealing. The dark plastic jar not only looks sleek but is also non-leaching, which is an added bonus. The label clearly states that the jar is BPA-free, and I appreciate that they prioritize safety and health in their packaging.
Wedderspoon offers various sizes to cater to different customer needs. I’ve seen their honey available in 8.8 Oz jars, 17.6 Oz jars, and 35.2 Oz or 1 kg jars. They’ve ensured that the jars are properly and safely packaged, with a well-sealed exterior and an additional interior seal. In my experience, this double-seal protection has kept their honey fresh and protected from potential contaminants.
For those always on the go or who prefer a more convenient option, Wedderspoon also provides 4.2 Oz travel packs and 12 Oz squeeze bottles. I’ve found the squeeze bottle particularly handy in the kitchen, as it makes it easy to drizzle honey on my morning toast or tea without making a mess.
In addition, Wedderspoon offers an 11.5 Oz glass jar version of its honey for customers who prefer traditional packaging to plastic jars.
Price and Value
While it may still be a bit pricey if you consume large amounts of honey regularly, Wedderspoon’s pricing is competitive when looking at the Manuka honey market as a whole. From my research, I’ve noticed that they tend to offer some of the most affordable Manuka honey options available.
The below chart compares the cost of Wedderspoon’s manuka honey to other brands. Though its quality may be questionable, it is also quite cheap—a good choice for those who are on a budget.
I used to buy Wedderspoon honey from local grocery stores like TJMaxx or Marshalls. However, I’ve recently discovered that their products are no longer stocked at these locations. This led me to explore online options, where I found even better deals. For example, their monofloral manuka honey with KFactor 16, 8.8 oz, is listed at $23.99 on their website, but I’ve found it online for as low as $16.46. Similarly, their multifloral manuka honey with KFactor 12, 8.8 oz, costs $14.99 – a competitive price within the market.
In addition to these fair prices, Wedderspoon also offers various discounts and promotions from time to time. For example, you can save 15% by purchasing one of their honey bundles, which can make a significant difference in the overall cost for those who regularly consume manuka.
It’s also available through Subscribe & Save, which gives you 10% off every time you order it. Plus, if your order is over $25, shipping is free!
Pros & Cons
- Convenient travel-size packs
- Meets the SQF standard
- The most wallet-friendly brand
- Sourced and packed in New Zealand
- Monofloral and Multifloral options
- Not suitable for people with diabetes
- There is no UMF certification
- No sign about the MGO ratings
- NPA activity is unclear
- Only three strengths are available
If you’re looking for a cheap but good brand of manuka honey and you aren’t bothered about UMF certifications, then Wedderspoon is the product for you. Of the varieties that Wedderspoon produces, the mono-floral variety or K-Factor 22+ and 16+ manuka honey are supposedly stronger. The other K-Factor 12 option is multi-floral honey, which is derived from a blend of sources.
Although there is no data about the non-peroxide activity of Wedderspoon, it is still safe for consumption. So, don’t hesitate to try a sample of Wedderspoon manuka honey. But be realistic with your expectations if you intend to use it as medicine.
Questions & Answers
1. Does Wedderspoon honey undergo pasteurization?
2. Can Wedderspoon manuka honey be considered “Medicinal Grade”?
3. How many servings are there per container?
4. What is the shelf life of Wedderspoon?
5. Will adding Wedderspoon honey to hot tea cause it to lose its valuable nutrients?
Other Options to Consider
- New Zealand Honey Co. Manuka Honey
- Comvita Manuka Honey
- Manukora Manuka Honey
- Mānuka Health Manuka Honey
- Steens Manuka Honey
- Egmont Manuka Honey