Follow the Flowers
This Honey Heals Country
Blending Traditional Knowledge with innovation to regenerate Country and community.
Heal Country, Heal Community.
For all time, Country has sustained the First Nations people of Australia. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples nurtured and protected the land, allowing people, animals, soils, waterways and forests to flourish.
Since European invasion, policies promoting the dispossession of First Nations people from their lands have disrupted this delicate equilibrium between environmental and community health and wellbeing. Today, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians are grossly over-represented in rates of communicable and lifestyle disease, unemployment, incarceration and deaths in custody.
Evidence has shown that re-establishing First Nations connections to Country can have positive impacts on the social determinants of health, and contribute to the revival of language, culture and knowledge. And, as Australian agricultural producers grapple with the consequences of degraded soils and climate change, reconnecting First Nations knowledge, skills and practice to Country is becoming even more vital.
Uplifting communities through ethical, alliance-based agriculture.
Follow the Flowers is a First Nations-led farming collective, led by Outback Academy Australia, that connects First Nations farmers in an ethical and authentic supply network supplying honey, foods (including bushfoods), botanicals and wildflowers.
Farmers use place-based Traditional Knowledge (the traditional knowledge and traditional cultural expressions of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples) and new technologies to regenerate Country while doing business on their lands. Proceeds from the sale of all Follow the Flowers products are invested back into the communities that produced them – helping to reverse the legacies of invasion and accelerating economic, employment and wellbeing for First Nations peoples.
AKQA has been working with Outback Academy to create a distinctive and meaningful voice – including adaptive product design and impact labelling system – that celebrates local efforts to regenerate Country and culture, and that takes direct inspiration from the changing seasons, wildflowers and Country.
Aboriginal farmers, men and women, young and older, are finding their voices and place in the agri-business and horticultural business community through this project… It has raised awareness about the impacts farmers can achieve when working together.
The relationship is the project.
AKQA and Outback Academy Australia have formed a close relationship founded on circular reciprocity. Under this approach, each provides the other with support, advice, knowledge, and connections in their respective community, with the shared ambition to regenerate community and Country for a better future.
AKQA and Outback Academy’s partnership is ongoing, and the two organisations are continuing to work together to forge new pathways for First Nations farmers, landowners, businesses and young people that will help them achieve greater economic, employment and wellbeing freedoms.
Healing Country Statement.
Central to Follow the Flowers design system is a unique and authentic system for communicating the environmental and social benefits of the Follow the Flowers model.
The Healing Country Statement is a clear statement of local benefits and opportunities that have been created by Follow the Flowers membership. Farmers and landowners are encouraged to co-curate the statement and tell the stories of real, on-the-ground impacts that customers are helping to realise through their purchase.
Accelerating economic freedom and wellbeing for First Nations Australians.
Follow the Flowers isn’t just a product; it’s an invitation to participate in a national project to regenerate and nurture Australia’s native land, water and knowledge through innovative land and culture-based practices.
By bringing knowledge-holders and capability builders to local farms, Follow the Flowers is building up and supporting communities to update their land use practices, preserve local language and knowledge, support biodiversity and sustain employment opportunities that span agriculture, innovation and tourism industries.
As Australia moves to constitutionally recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in a Voice to Parliament, Follow the Flowers offers a model for all Australians to participate in the regeneration of Country and community, for the betterment of our shared future.