Rights: The University of Waikato Published 1 June 2007 Download

Honey has been used to treat wounds for thousands of years. Here, Peter Molan explains that the ancient Egyptians faced similar problems to current researchers. How do you keep runny honey on a wound?

Transcript

Peter Molan (University of Waikato)

The ancient Egyptians used it as a wound treatment, and they were obviously aware of the difficulty of keeping honey on the body when it gets runny at body temperature, because they mixed it with cotton fibre to make a paste, and sometimes with grease to make something that would stay on the wound.

Honey couldn’t be used by Māori in New Zealand because they didn’t have any honey until there was European settlement and the honey bee was brought to New Zealand.

The New Zealand native bees are solitary bees so you don’t get honey from them.