Plant Breeding Program

The ManukaLife and Kings Park and Botanic Gardens plant breeding program is the most comprehensive plant breeding program for Leptospermum honey and oil production in the world.

Our breeding program will ensure Australia continues to be a global leader in the production of Manuka honey and Manuka oil. ManukaLife owns the intellectual property and plant breeding rights of these programs that will underpin the future genetics of the Manuka industry in Australia.

ManukaLife’s foundation was based on science, which began with the Leptospermum Plant Breeding Program (PBP), developed to improve the outcomes of premium agricultural Manuka honey and oil crop. We knew that in order to establish a world’s best practice agricultural industry, one of the first requirements was to safeguard the quality of the Manuka plant stock and biosecurity protocols to ensure supply chain efficiencies. Our commitment to developing intellectual property through long term scientific research and plant breeding will ensure industry leadership, ongoing market access and global competitiveness.

Manuka plant breeding program
Manuka plant breeding program

ManukaLife, in conjunction with Kings Park and USC and funded by the Federal Government (AgriFutures), established a Plant Breeding Program for Leptospermum. In 2015 and 2016, Manukalife selected high-grade varietals of Leptospermum from Australia and New Zealand. In late 2016, we commenced work with the Botanic Gardens Parks Authority (BGPA) to develop hybrid Manuka honey and oil plants to maximise yields. The commercialisation of these genetics is underway with partnerships to grow, harvest and produce high-grade Manuka honey and oil. In parallel, sales of natural science-based value add products into medical, pharmaceutical, cosmetic, nutraceutical and essential oil global distribution channels are being developed.

Plant Breeding Program Objectives

The objective of our plant breeding programs is to expedite plant selection, plant breeding, propagation and plantation management capability within the Manuka honey and oil industries in Australia. Our goal is to produce elite genetics and superior agricultural outcomes to the current standards.

Manukalife PBP Honey Specific Objectives:

  • Longer flowering periods.
  • Higher chemical content of nectar (DHA) and honey (MGO).
  • Larger flower sizes and higher nectar production.
  • Precocious flowering.
  • Arid capability.

Manukalife PBP Oil Specific Objectives:

  • High levels of leaf oil.
  • High-quality leaf oil – minimum 25% BTK.
  • Increased biomass
Manuka plantation Western Australia