PhD student Katharina Schmidt wants to preserve the value of Tassie’s unique leatherwood honey by proving its unique characteristics.
By finding the unique properties and compounds specific to leatherwood honey, Miss Schmidt will develop parameters to create a leatherwood honey ‘fingerprint’ and authentication test.
Currently there is only a small amount of research on certain properties. In this project, Miss Schmidt will be looking at the big picture from many perspectives to make connections of the chemical profile and properties to leatherwood honey.
Miss Schmidt is also investigating another potential value-add for authentic leatherwood honey, bioactivity. The honey’s antibacterial and prebiotic properties, along with high levels of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties, could result in the honey being used to improve gut health or as a topical health treatment.
Miss Schmidt’s project is part of a nationwide initiative led by the Tasmanian Beekeepers Association and the Cooperative Research Centre for Honey Bee Products (CRC HBP).