New Zealand Manuka Honey: The Art of Marketing Your Brand

05 July 2024

New Zealand Mānuka honey, renowned for its distinct flavour profile, has become a popular household ingredient around the world. However, in the competitive honey market, effective packaging and marketing are pivotal in ensuring this renowned ingredient from the native Mānuka tree stands out. 

In this article, we will delve into the significance of packaging and marketing for pure New Zealand Mānuka honey, exploring how these aspects contribute not only to its commercial success but also to the preservation of its cultural and ecological heritage.


UMF™ Manuka Honey: A Key Player

Before discussing the importance of packaging and marketing, it is necessary to understand what sets Mānuka honey apart. Derived from the nectar of the Mānuka tree (Leptospermum scoparium), native to New Zealand, this honey has become a sought-after ingredient worldwide. The presence of methylglyoxal (MGO) is a key factor that differentiates Mānuka honey from other honey varieties.


Genuine Manuka Honey’s Cultural Significance & Heritage

Mānuka honey is not just a commodity; it is ingrained in the cultural history of New Zealand's Māori people. The Mānuka tree holds sacred significance, and the honey derived from its flowers is considered a taonga, a treasure. The responsible harvesting of Mānuka honey is crucial not only for economic reasons but also for preserving the balance of New Zealand's ecosystems. Effective packaging and marketing must, therefore, honour and reflect this cultural and ecological history.


The Power of Packaging Manuka Honey

Packaging is the first point of contact between the consumer and the product. When it comes to pure New Zealand Mānuka honey, the packaging should not just be visually appealing; it must tell a story, show authenticity, and communicate the quality of the product. Here are several aspects that make packaging crucial for Mānuka honey:

Authenticity and Transparency:

Authenticity is key when marketing Mānuka honey. The packaging should transparently communicate the honey's origin, quality, and unique properties. Certification labels, such as the Unique Mānuka Factor (UMF) and Mānuka Honey Science Definition, can serve as consumer trust indicators.

Preservation of Potency:

Mānuka honey's potency is directly linked to its MGO content. Packaging is key in preserving this potency by protecting the honey from external factors such as light, heat, and moisture. Dark, opaque jars or UV-resistant packaging materials should be used to maintain the honey's unique qualities.

Storytelling and Branding:

Packaging is a powerful storytelling tool. Brands should leverage this to tell the story of the journey of Mānuka honey, from the clean landscapes of New Zealand to considered beekeeping practices. Engaging stories create an emotional connection with consumers, which in turn builds brand loyalty.

Sustainability and Eco-Friendliness:

In a world where environmental awareness is increasingly important, considered packaging is not just a trend; its a necessity. Brands that prioritise eco-friendly materials and practices resonate with environmentally conscious consumers. From recyclable jars to minimalistic designs, Midlands packaging aligns with the values associated with Mānuka honey.

Differentiation in a Crowded Market:

The honey market is vast and diverse, with many varieties available. Effective packaging serves as a point of difference. Highlighting the unique features of Mānuka honey, such as its UMF rating and MGO content, can set it apart from other honey varieties on the shelf.


The Art of Marketing: Crafting a Compelling Narrative

Marketing tells the story of Mānuka honey, showing consumers its rich cultural heritage and distinct flavour profile. Here are key elements that contribute to the successful marketing of pure New Zealand Mānuka honey:

Educational Campaigns:

Many consumers may not be familiar with the distinctive qualities of Mānuka honey. Educational campaigns through various channels, including social media, blogs, and traditional advertising, can tell consumers about the unique properties and well-being benefits of Mānuka honey.

Cultural Respect and Collaboration:

Marketing should be conducted with respect to the cultural significance of Mānuka honey. Collaborating with Māori communities, incorporating traditional knowledge, and supporting initiatives that contribute to the well-being of these communities can enhance the authenticity of the brand.

Digital Presence and E-Commerce:

In the digital age, an online presence is key. An informative and user-friendly website, coupled with an active presence on social media platforms, enables brands to connect directly with consumers. E-commerce platforms provide a convenient channel for consumers to access Mānuka honey globally.

Influencer Partnerships:

Influencer marketing can be a powerful tool to reach a broader audience. Collaborating with influencers who align with the brand's values and have a genuine interest in health and wellness can amplify the message of Mānuka honey's unique properties.

Quality Assurance and Traceability:

Assurance of quality and traceability creates confidence in consumers. Marketing should emphasise the rigorous testing processes, adherence to industry standards, and traceability of each batch of Mānuka honey from hive to jar.


How Can You Best Market Your Manuka Honey Brand?

Packaging and marketing are key to selling pure New Zealand Mānuka honey, balancing nature, culture, and commerce. As a globally popular product with a bold and unique flavour deeply rooted in the Māori tradition, Mānuka honey deserves packaging that preserves its potency and marketing that tells its story with authenticity and respect.

Effective packaging goes beyond how it looks on the shelf. It is an important part of Mānuka honey's integrity and cultural heritage, ensuring that the honey reaches consumers in its purest form.

Marketing, on the other hand, connects Mānuka honey with a global audience. Through compelling story-telling, educational campaigns, and a commitment to looking after the planet, marketing elevates Mānuka honey from a commodity to a valued product.

Through considered packaging and strategic marketing, we not only celebrate this ingredient but also ensure it remains a respected product. 


Excellence in Marketing & Packaging Manuka Honey

In the world of honey marketing, Midlands Apiaries stands as a testament of excellence, offering valuable insights into how to package and market Mānuka honey effectively. 

When it comes to packaging, Midlands Apiaries understands the importance of authenticity and transparency. With years of expertise in the industry, we can guide honey producers in choosing packaging that not only meets regulatory standards but also communicates the quality of your product. 


Ensuring Manuka Honey Label Compliance

Midlands Apiaries' expertise in label compliance is invaluable. We can assist honey producers in navigating the landscape of certification labels, such as the Unique Mānuka Factor (UMF), ensuring that your products meet the highest standards of quality and authenticity. By collaborating with Midlands Apiaries, honey brands can establish trust and credibility with consumers. 


Manuka Honey Brand Development 

In terms of brand development, Midlands Apiaries brings years of experience to the table. We understand that effective branding goes beyond visual appeal; it tells the story and heritage of Mānuka honey. We can help honey producers create compelling narratives that resonate with consumers, highlighting the cultural significance and environmental importance associated with Mānuka honey. By engaging with our expertise, brands can differentiate themselves in a crowded market, forging meaningful connections with your audience.


Choose Midlands Apiaries for Your Manuka Honey Marketing

In summary, Midlands Apiaries is a trustworthy partner for Mānuka honey producers, offering support in crafting effective packaging and marketing strategies. Through our guidance, brands can navigate the industry's landscape, ensuring that their products not only stand out on crowded shelves but also deeply resonate with consumers worldwide. 

Our expertise is instrumental in safeguarding the integrity and authenticity of Mānuka honey, building trust and loyalty among potential consumers. By partnering with Midlands, honey producers can confidently tell the story of their product, honouring its cultural heritage and ecological significance while using modern marketing practices to reach new audiences and maintain its global appeal. 



Popovic, Igor, et al. “Factors Influencing Consumers’ Decision to Purchase Food in Environmentally Friendly Packaging: What Do We Know and Where Do We Go from Here?” Sustainability, vol. 11, no. 24, 16 Dec. 2019, p. 7197, https://doi.org/10.3390/su11247197.