A VARIETY of honey from Edinburgh could be the vital ingredient in combating hospital superbugs, after a study found it just as effective at fighting bacteria as the world-renowned Manuka honey from New Zealand.

Researchers from Queen Margaret University, in the capital, have found that if used in high concentrations, honey from the Portobello area is equally as effective as the more famous and expensive Manuka variety at killing some common strains of bacteria.

Dr Lorna Fyfe, senior lecturer in microbiology and immunology at the university, said: "Honey contains polyphenols which are important in killing bacteria and Manuka honey is known to possess unique antibacterial properties.

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"Our research found both honeys were equally as effective at killing three specified bacteria in the study. This suggests there could be some highly-active polyphenols which are unique in Portobello honey."