Horopito - Members

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HoropitoPlant Origin: Mountain horopito, is an evergreen shrub or small tree (1–2.5 m) commonly called pepperwood because its leaves have a very hot bite. Its yellow and green leaves are blotched with red; new leaves in the spring are bright red. It is widespread throughout New Zealand, from lowland forests to higher montane forests, and from 36° 30′ South as far southwards as Stewart Island/Rakiura.

Description: Horopito (Pseudowintera colorata) is only found in New Zealand and is a member of the Winteraceae family. It is one of the oldest surviving flowering plants and it has survived 65 million years because of the superb natural chemical defence system in its leaves. Its antioxidants have enabled it to survive the millennia of climate changes that wiped out most early plant species. These actives have also enabled it to sucessfully withstand predators since the dinosaur age. Horopito is so ancient it lacks the specialist water conducting vessels of most flowering plants. Therefore it is very susceptible to drought and grows only in swampy or high rainfall areas, usually under temperate rainforest. The subcanopy of these forests provides ideal conditions for the growth of yeasts and fungi, which is why Horopito has developed such outstanding natural defences in its leaves against these organisms.

Chemical Composition: Active Horopito™ oleoresin is a rich source of the sesquiterpene dialdehyde polygodial. Other constituents include essential oils such as pinenes, limones, humulene and eugenol, and the flavonoids quercetin, luteolin and proanthocyanidins.


• functional ingredients
• natural antimicrobials
• flavour enhancers
• natural preservative
• preservative synergist

Forest Herbs Research Ltd

Contact: Peter Butler Work 142 Collingwood Street Nelson 5070 New Zealand Phone: +64-3-548-2741 Website: www.forestherbs.co.nz

Phytomed Medicinal Herbs Ltd

Contact: Julia Van De Coolwijk Work 16 Charann Pl Avondale Auckland New Zealand Phone: +64 9 8280040 Website: www.phytomed.co.nz Website: www.kiwiherb.co.nz

Plant & Food Research

Contact: Danette Olsen Work Private Bag 92169 120 Mt Albert Road Auckland New Zealand Phone: +64 9 925 7000 Website: www.plantandfood.co.nz

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