How Long Does Manuka Honey Last?


4 minute read

Essential Takeaways

Manuka honey has an impressive shelf life and can last for years without spoiling.

Proper storage conditions are crucial for preserving its quality and effectiveness.

Over time, honey may undergo natural changes in consistency and appearance, but its benefits will remain intact.

Manuka honey is a unique type of honey produced by bees from the nectar of the mānuka tree (Leptospermum scoparium).

It’s known for some remarkable health benefits and potent antibacterial properties.

One common question people ask is ‘how long does manuka honey last before losing its potency or going bad?’

The good news is that manuka honey has an impressive shelf life when stored correctly.

There are also a few other factors that influence manuka honey’s shelf life, so that’s what this guide is all about.

In this guide to how long does manuka honey last:

How Processing Can Affect Manuka Honey Shelf Life

Beekeepers play a key role in ensuring the longevity and quality of manuka honey by taking various measures throughout the production and harvesting process.

First, it's essential to pick the right time for harvesting the honey.

The manuka tree's blooming season usually falls between late spring and early summer in New Zealand.

Harvesting the honey at the optimal time not only means obtaining honey rich in manuka flower nectar but also avoiding excessive crystallisation.

Secondly, creaming the honey can help, too.

This process involves controlling the crystallisation of honey by carefully manipulating its temperature and consistency.

By encouraging smaller, fine crystals to form uniformly, the honey achieves a smooth, creamy texture, which not only enhances its spreadability but also extends its shelf life.

This is why we cream all our manuka honey.

Additionally, beekeepers meticulously monitor the harvesting process, ensuring that the honey is extracted and stored in optimal conditions, away from excessive heat and moisture.

Proper storage in well-sealed containers, away from direct sunlight, further preserves the honey's unique properties. This allows it to maintain its exceptional quality and potency for an extended period.


Correct Storage to Improve Manuka Honey Shelf Life

To keep your manuka honey fresh and preserve its quality, it is essential to store it under the right conditions.

Manuka honey has an impressive shelf life and can last for years when stored appropriately.

To maintain the optimal quality of your manuka honey, follow these storage guidelines:

  • Temperature: Keep your honey in a cool and dry environment. The ideal temperature to maintain manuka honey is around 20°C (68°F). Don’t store your honey in the fridge!

  • Location: Keep your honey in a dark place, like a cupboard or pantry, away from direct sunlight or heat sources. Storing manuka honey in a dark location prevents the degradation of its beneficial properties.

Container: Keep your manuka honey in its container. Ours are designed to preserve the shelf life of your honey for as long as possible.

Why we don’t use glass for our manuka honey jars

While glass containers are commonly used for honey storage, they may not always be the best option.

Honey, including manuka honey, can absorb moisture if not stored properly, leading to a potential decrease in quality.

Glass containers, though a popular choice, are not completely airtight, allowing subtle moisture absorption over time, especially in areas with fluctuating humidity levels.

This moisture absorption can affect the honey's texture and promote fermentation.

Instead, high-quality food-grade plastic containers (like ours) or stainless steel canisters with tight-sealing lids are often recommended for storing manuka honey.

These containers provide a more secure and airtight environment, minimising the risk of moisture absorption and preserving the honey's original texture, flavour, and beneficial properties for a longer duration.

How Manuka Honey Changes Over Time

As time passes, you may notice some changes in your manuka honey.

One common change you might observe is the honey crystallising.

Don't worry!

This is a natural process and doesn't impact the honey's quality or nutritional value.

In fact, it's a sign that your manuka honey is pure and unadulterated.

To get it back to a smoother consistency, simply place the jar in a bowl of warm water for a few minutes.

You can check out our dedicated guide for more detailed instructions.

Get Your Premium Manuka Honey from New Zealand Honey Co.

We do everything we can to ensure your manuka honey lasts as long as possible.

We also have our manuka honey UMF™ graded to verify its quality and purity so that its unique compounds are kept intact and not contaminated.

By following proper storage guidelines, and using clean utensils, you can ensure that your jar of manuka honey continues to delight your taste buds and provide health benefits for a prolonged time.

Get your premium manuka honey here.

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