The Economic Participation of Indigenous Communities Cooperative Research Centre (EPIC CRC) aims to develop, over its ten-year term, an internationally competitive, dynamic and growing First Food Agribusiness and Fisheries sector, built on Indigenous principles of sustainability and ecosystem thinking. EPIC CRC is being led out of the University of Canberra, and includes many AWP Partners. It will be submitted for funding in Round 24 of the Cooperative Research Centres Program. Further information is available on the EPIC CRC website and a short video explainer on how CRCs operate is available on YouTube.
With the support of Reconciliation Australia as a key partner, EPIC CRC will bring together businesses from land and water management, first foods and botanical supply chains to tackle challenges that could not be solved if not through a collaborative effort.
EPIC CRC aims to boost the competitiveness and productivity of Indigenous agribusinesses. It will do this by addressing:
- Technical challenges that limit the growth and scaling of agricultural and fisheries businesses that are producing novel foods and ingredients;
- Supply chain integration and system challenges that limit participation of Indigenous businesses within the agribusiness (including fisheries) sector; and
- Capability building to grow and develop innovative Aboriginal land and water businesses.
EPIC CRC, which is co-led by Indigenous and non-Indigenous people from industry, government, community and academia, will:
- Generate benefits for Indigenous businesses from better protection of the knowledge and intellectual property Indigenous people hold.
- Address a national imbalance between Indigenous and non-Indigenous businesses and realise an industry opportunity, while achieving the powerful promise that reconciliation offers Australia.
- Enhance the competitiveness of export-focused businesses to differentiate themselves in the marketplace with manufactured high valued products using unique and innovative ingredients.
- Enhance and protect biodiversity through regeneration of land and water and more sustainable land and water management.
- Support the achievement of solutions to address nation-wide and global impacts identified in the Australia State of the Environment report 2021.
In doing this, EPIC CRC will support the vision of Indigenous Business Australia, ‘To advance a nation in which Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are economically independent and an integral part of the economy’.
If you are interested in learning more about the EPIC CRC, or how to join as a partner, please contact Bern Spinks.