ABC's Landline paid NATIVE EXTRACTS a visit to get our thoughts on the booming bush food/botanical industry and the growth of the global trend in A-Beauty. With increasing interest in Australian ingredients, NATIVE EXTRACTS is expanding growers' opportunities into cosmetic, nutraceutical and pharmaceutical markets, while supporting a transparent, collaborative and inclusive primary industry.
Since 2012, our Alstonville-based company, has developed a knowledge base of Australian native species through our innovation of the world’s first Cellular Extraction process, which has expanded markets for growers and harvesters to cosmetics and nutraceuticals. As we continue to develop and expand our technology, partnerships and research, we aim to support a stronger, inclusive foundation for the bush foods/native botanical industry that goes far beyond food, creating access to commercialise species and products on Country for Indigenous communities, as well as supporting existing growers in the region.
No Slowing Down Now – Australian Botanical Extracts Exponentially in Demand
With global interest in Australian Natives escalating, our country has never had so many opportunities to showcase our species, their stories and phyto-nutrients. There is an exponential projection of Australian botanicals into new markets, as natural ingredients are in demand across food, beverage, cosmetics, nutraceuticals and pharmaceuticals, which translates to expansion of our local primary industry for domestic and export markets. The global botanical extract market is predicted to reach USD$6.03 Billion by 2022 with a Compound Annual Growth Rate of 9.0%. The superior plant profiles we achieve with our extraction protocols identify the unique potency and wide range of nutrients our natives can offer and stand to take a significant part of this market in the next decade.
Saving the Stories of our Native Species
It is an important time to ensure we manage our natural assets ethically, responsibly and sustainably to ensure the benefit and integrity of the market remains in our Country. Indigenous participation must take a higher position in the value chain to protect the IP and preserve the invaluable stories that belong to these plants. Already some of our higher profile species are being grown overseas, which takes from our potential export markets and dilutes the culture attached to our species.
At “Native”, we have always acknowledged our ability to create greater understanding of a species' phyto-compound profile, which can play a small part in improving the education of their value, create new markets and potential applications that support the growth of a primary industry based on our native species. The highlight is when we work with Indigenous groups that can now formulate with the species they want to showcase or connect back to their Country, to not only share their stories, but the science as well.
The Northern Rivers region is a rich, untapped food bowl and medicine cabinet of native species offering rich sources of antioxidants, nutrition, cosmetic applications and more. Using botanicals produced by our harsh, yet pristine ecosystems, NATIVE EXTRACTS’ innovative technology delivers the full spectrum of a species’ phyto-compounds (the entourage), creating the first water-soluble, natural extracts that past processes could not achieve. As a result, we created the first unprecedented library of ‘true to nature’ plant profiles of over 70 Australian species and their phyto-compounds. Our research has paved the way for cosmetic brands to feature natives as natural, hero ingredients, transferring ancient Aboriginal knowledge to modern applications, contributing to the evolution of the global trend in A-Beauty.
Going Beyond Bush “Food”
Although our native bush foods and botanicals have been valued for thousands of years for medicinal and edible uses, they now are being used more and more as a potent source of phyto-activity for the extracts industry. Our 8 years work with Southern Cross University has created new data to revalue local crops for a multitude of industries.
We show growers how they can move beyond the food / produce industry into new markets by creating ingredient formats from their surplus stock. Creating flavours, supplements and topical extracts, we extend growers’ capitalisation of their crops beyond the harvest cycle and introduce new value-added sources of revenue.
As we share species’ compound profiles with growers, we reveal further values of their crops and new market opportunities. We can show growers that do essential oil distillation a new look at their species water-soluble profiles, creating a new ingredient for them to commercialise. Over the last several years, we have been inspired to see more and more Aboriginal communities and individuals involved in the industry, from forming wild harvesting corporations to launching their own product ranges.
Plant Extracts with a Purpose
Our mentorship program supports budding Indigenous entrepreneurs like Anthony Wilson of Nood Australia to deliver the powerful uses of native plants through ingredients that leverage our scientific innovation in Cellular Extraction, while creating the strong connection to Country he wanted to achieve. It’s been a privilege to be part of his journey and watch him grow from strength to strength.
We need to work together to ensure our untapped reservoir of phyto-activity does not leave our country to be grown offshore, and that this primary industry we create is inclusive and respectful, with strategies for traditional IP protection. By sharing our extraction innovation and pioneering native plant profiling across multiple sectors, our mission is to translate our native ingredients across multiple platforms to support the growth of a commercialized native primary industry that is collaborative and transparent, revealing the backstories that deserve credit and being told.
Email Us for more information on specific species, to find out how to refresh your brand’s extracts with natural phyto-activity, or to simply explore our pharmacopoeia by species, application or compounds.