Ngooka, the Next Manuka?
Formed by the Noongar people of Western Australia, the Noongar Land Enterprise Group (NLE) is Australia’s first Aboriginal grower group. By creating and successfully managing Noongar land-based business enterprises, the NLE is developing a model that benefits Aboriginal people, as well as the wider community.
One of the NLE’s key business aspirations is honey. Given the focus of Noongar landholders to protect remnant vegetation and rehabilitate areas of native flora suitable for honey bee populations, honey is a natural fit. The timing is also perfect to capitalise on a growing demand in new Asian markets for high-quality, Western Australian honey.
After three years of hard work, the NLE’s inaugural batch of freshly extracted honey is now market-ready. The product has been named Ngooka, the Ballardong Noongar word for ‘honey’. With this initial micro batch being extremely well received, the NLE is now aiming to develop a completely Indigenous commercial enterprise for honey grown from native flora and fauna. To help with achieving this aim, the NLE applied for FIAL’s Enterprise Solutions Centre Program (ESCP).