The Perfect Environment
Ultraviolet intensities during the New Zealand summer are at least 37% higher than summers in similar latitudes in the northern hemisphere. This extra ultraviolet light, specifically UVB, causes plants to produce higher volumes of bioactives and polyphenols in their leaves and fruit to protect themselves against the harmful UVB rays. Polyphenols are micronutrients with antioxidant activity; they also play an important role as a prebiotic, increasing the ratio of beneficial bacteria in the human gut.
New Zealand’s growing environment also benefits from the country’s ‘clean green’ status. While New Zealand’s land area is greater than the United Kingdom, its population is less than five million. This means there is less pressure on natural resources and more land available for agriculture.
Robust legislation for growers is another factor contributing to New Zealand’s bioactive advantage. The Ministry for Primary Industries is responsible for ensuring the safety and sustainability of fruit and vegetable crops in New Zealand. They enforce some of the strictest growing regulations in the world.