Clayton Donovan, Australia's only hatted indigenous chef, has joined Outback Spirit Foundation as ambassador to help spread the word for the current crowdfunding campaign www.outbackspirit.net on until 28 May - to empower more Aboriginal native bush food farmers to thrive.
Clayton enjoys sourcing plants from the bush foraging for amazing native ingredients and you may have seem in him action previously as star of ABC’s Wild Kitchen TV program.
“It’s really important to support these farms in rural areas to push forward the bush food journey and keep native foods thriving,” Clayton says. “There’s great demand for Australian native ingredients but not enough of an industry to supply. Indigenous farmers are custodians of the land and bush foods are an important part of their culture and something we can showcase here and around the world.”
“Outback Spirit Foundation has great integrity and are really out there working with the indigenous farmers and communities to help their bush food farms thrive,” Clayton explains. “I feel it’s important to get behind such a Foundation like this for Australia.”
Clayton grew up on Gumbaynggirr and Bundjalung land on the mid north coast of New South Wales. He started learning about native produce when he was four years old out walking and foraging with his Aunties and grandmothers, around their home in the Nambucca Valley. They would pass on knowledge that had been shared through generations of indigenous people. Taking what they found in the bush or along the coastline, they would then cook it up at their homes. Meanwhile at home his mum would be trying out new recipes from Europe and it was this fusion of flavours that left an indelible mark on him which would one day define his career as a celebrated chef and champion of bush foods.
These days Clayton Donovan is creating amazing food at corporate functions and public and private events. He also shares his knowledge at schools with cooking lessons and mentoring.
You can find out more about Clayton at https://www.facebook.com/6080james/