Mānuka honey is produced by European honey bees foraging on the mānuka or tea tree which grows uncultivated throughout New Zealand and southeastern Australia.
Mānuka honey is markedly viscous. This property is due to the presence of a protein or colloid and is its main visually defining character, along with its typical dark cream to dark brown colour.
Mānuka honey for export from New Zealand must be independently tested and pass the Mānuka Honey Science Definition test as specified by the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI), The test comprises five attributes. Four are chemical and one is DNA. The honey must pass all five tests to be labeled as mānuka.