Doug and Tracey are the husband and wife duo behind Aboriginal-owned business Native Oz Bushfoods. Set on farmland in QLD’s Ropeley Valley, drought forced Doug and Tracey to reimagine what they could grow on their 40-acre grazing and dry farming block.
Doug, a proud Bundjalung man, would often experiment with different native spice blends, pairing them with meats and cooking distinctive, memorable meals for friends and family. With frequently satisfied dinner guests, he realised he might be on to something, so they set about trying to understand how they could turn their farm around by growing their own ingredients.
Through research, trial and error, Doug and Tracey planted various native plants and seeds such as Desert Quandong (native peach), saltbush and edible wattles. Three years later, and through sheer perseverance, Doug and Tracey successfully are growing the quandong, despite being told it wouldn't grow in the area, nor any other part of QLD!
“My wife and I weren't willing to take no for an answer, as we knew where to find them in the bush, so we decided to push on.”
This couple doesn’t seem to slow down with over 550 trees already planted from 40 different varieties of edible native bushfoods and another 1000+ trees to plant in coming months. Doug and Tracey also make and sell a range of gourmet jams, salt blends and sauces, including Davidson Plum Relish, Lemon Pepper salt blend and Quandong syrup.
Currently, the pair have an educational garden and bushfood orchard in the works, which they plan to open to the public soon. We hope to visit when we can travel again! To view the Native Oz Bushfoods range of products and stay in the loop about the opening of their gardens, visit nativeozbushfoods.com.au