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Minister for Agriculture Mary-Anne Thomas with Traditional Owner groups at Native Food and Botanicals Strategy launch at GLaWAC, Forestec, Kalimna West. (GLaWAC photo)

Native food strategy

Native food strategy

Minister for Agriculture Mary-Anne Thomas with Traditional Owner groups at Native Food and Botanicals Strategy launch at GLaWAC, Forestec, Kalimna West. (GLaWAC photo)

Traditional Owner food strategy launched in Gunaikurnai country

A strategy has been released for Traditional Owners to restore their leadership of Victoria’s growing native foods and botanicals industry.

Minister for Agriculture Mary-Anne Thomas visited The Bush Café at Forestec, Kalimna West yesterday, to join with the Gunaikurnai Land and Waters Aboriginal Corporation (GLaWAC) and their partners from Wulgunggo Ngalu to launch the Native Food and Botanicals Strategy.

Traditional Owners have a plan to create a strong, authentic, sustainable bushfood industry to benefit all Victorians. It will guide recovery and reclamation of important knowledge and practices by mapping out the actions needed for Victorian Traditional Owners to restore their rights of biocultural species, knowledge and practices.

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The strategy is an Australian first and outlines that the best way to turn native foods and botanicals into a major, sustainable industry is to protect its integrity and authenticity.

GLaWAC said it's a big step forward for their 'Bush to Bowl' ambitions. "In partnership with Wulgunggo Ngalu, we're developing a food supply chain to strengthen self determination and increase the leadership and participation of Aboriginal Victorians in the bush food sector."

Rodney Carter, Chief Executive, Dja Dja Wurrung Clans Aboriginal Corporation and Project Control Group Chair said: “This Strategy is about making sure that economic development is a positive thing for our communities, that it, safeguards our traditional knowledge and helps us to authentically share our culture and ancient wisdom with the world.”

Paul Paton, CEO of the Federation of Victorian Traditional Owner Corporation, said: "“With Treaty just over the horizon, this is another great example of the Victorian Government empowering Traditional Owner leadership, in self-determination mode, to build a future where we can all benefit from the traditional knowledge and practices passed on to us by our ancestors, and celebrate that with pride.”

The Federation of Victorian Traditional Owner Corporations facilitated the development of the Strategy with $100,000 support from the Victorian Government.

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