A Kakadu plum fruit bite is now featuring on the inflight menu of Australia’s largest airline, in a move the bush tucker industry hopes will boost demand to new heights.
Kakadu plums are harvested from the wild each year across northern Australia, mostly by Indigenous communities, and are regarded as having more vitamin C than any other fruit on the planet.
Tahlia Mandie from Kakadu Plum Co. has teamed up with Sydney-based Spotted Cow Cookies to create a Kakadu Plum and Berry Bite, and said having Qantas come on board was exciting.
“It’s a big deal for a lot of reasons,” Ms Mandie said.
“To have Qantas get behind us, but also the Indigenous growers and everyone in the industry, to put it on the map, to make it [Kakadu plum] mainstream, it’s a massive deal.”
Kakadu Plum Co. sources its plums from an Indigenous enterprise operating north of Broome in Western Australia.The plums are frozen and transported to Melbourne for processing, creating a Kakadu plum powder which is used in a variety of products.
The Kakadu Plum and Berry Bites made their debut this week on board flights from Sydney and Brisbane. A statement from Qantas said the airline was delighted to be serving a Kakadu plum product on its domestic services.
“We like to think that for international tourists, when they’re tucking into the bites, we’re giving them their first taste of Australia,” the statement said.
“As Australia’s national carrier we’re big supporters of Indigenous growers and we’re keen to make sure we’re giving our customers a taste of native ingredients, like the Kakadu plum, in the food they enjoy on board.
“We’re always proud to work with local suppliers from around the country to showcase the best of Australian food and produce.”
Ms Mandie said the demand for Kakadu plum was easily outstripping supply at present and it was important the industry worked together to build its capacity.
“Demand is just going through the roof, both in Australia and internationally,” she said.