The Medicinal Honey Forest - an Australian regenerative agribusiness

  • Primary solution to challenges facing Australian regional communities and environment
  • Low-barrier entry, high-yield return on investment for farmers, landholders, beekeepers and honey packers
  • Australian food security innovation, native plant land regeneration, strong, healthy, disease resistant bees

Gather By provides a new honey-based agribusiness, incorporating regenerative land-use and innovative beekeeping practises: Utilising our proprietary “Medicinal Honey Forests” (MHF), created from symbiotic combinations of selected high - yielding Australian native Leptospermum plants plus bee- fodder plants, for the purpose of generating chemical free, raw bioactive, Manuka- type, honeys for local and export markets, while prioritising bee health and regional industry and ecosystems. 

Gather By Medicinal Clonal Selection Plants

The starting point in Gather By’s agribusiness model holistic value chain are Medicinal Clonal Selection (MCS) plants. These plant stocks exhibit dihydroxacetone (DHA) levels, which are up to an impressive threefold higher than New Zealand’s highest-rated Manuka plant. These selected hyper-DHA producing Leptospermum strains are now available for planting and commercialisation. 

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Long flowering season

MCS plants exhibit earlier flowering - being from the end of Year 1 compared with Year 5-6 when planted as seedlings - as well as a broader spread and duration of flowerings. As a result, Gather By’s innovative MCS plants greatly extend the harvesting window to as much as 6 months compared with New Zealand Manuka’s 6-weeks, in the wild. 

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Diverse plant range

Gather By’s range of 15 separate species meet the plant hardiness requirements of diverse bioregions produced in quantities according to realistic planting projections discussed and agreed between the landholder and Gather By. 

Producing high-value medicinal honey 

Landholders and farmers have an opportunity to explore or diversify into viable agribusinesses that generate lucrative financial returns and sustainable solutions that address soil degradation and help mitigate risks associated with increasing climate and rainfall variability. Gather By’s unique agribusiness solution is an innovative MHF planting design that produces high- value provenance-guaranteed honey. The design incorporates MCS plants, a range of bee-fodder support plants and regenerative land management practices to optimise honey yield, regenerate ecosystems and maintain wildlife habitat. 

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Bee health, potent honey, and the numbers

These practices regenerate fertility, protect topsoil and create a nutrition-rich, pest- and pesticide-free haven for honeybees. The MCS plants produce nectar with high DHA, which converts to methylglyoxal (MGO), the primary value adding, bioactive molecule in the honey. To meet the growing global market demand of medicinal honey, Gather By has developed a strategy targeting 5,000Ha. Each Medicinal Honey Forest plantation is forecast to attract total revenues of $12,800 per ha. This is based on current market pricing $40/kg for Manuka honey, MCS plant pricing and associated support bee-fodder plants of $2.00. 

Please see this article in The Land newspaper, Manuka Comes to the People. 

Global medicine honey demand drives MHF adoption 

Landholders who want to continue to focus on their existing produce or livestock mix can incorporate Manuka honey in future land use plans. A key value add to all involved in production is a higher guarantee of medicinal honey supply. Our model and collaboration with beekeepers and landholders creates a new unique supply chain with value for all parties. This is made possible by Gather By’s guaranteed sales channel demand for the quality honey to be produced, as well as Gather By’s model of matching landholders who are not beekeepers, with professional apiaristsin a unique profit-sharing arrangement. As a result, landholders who are not yet experienced in honey production will be able to enter the market quickly and profitably, with healthy returns commencing from Year 2. Gather By’s agribusiness model value is ascribed into every element of Gather By’s first-of-its-kind agribusiness supply chain network that regenerates Australian farmland, supports regional economies and produces high-value honey. 

Driving increased ROI 

MHFs provide landholders and beekeepers that purchase its MCS plants with the opportunity to generate an attractive income from the sales of the honey that their MHFs produce, while concurrently regenerating ecosystems. Conventional farming practices generate returns within a typical range of 5%-9% (based on the DPI market valuation method of leasing rates) and 10%+ from crops on irrigated lands. By comparison, fiscal returns from Gather By’s MHF plantations are more than double (15%-19%) those achieved via conventional farming. Over the past 2 to 3 years, Gather By has developed a resource allowing landholders to immediately see this monetary benefit of their investment in the MHF planting. Considering multiple land specific variables, this innovative resource forecasts specific return on investment, bringing the individual landholders into every step of the design and implementation process. 

End-to-end supply chain security 

Novel, regenerative beekeeping practices and protocols within Gather By’s MHF promote an environment that prioritises bee health and maximises yield. Beekeepers capitalise upon honey distribution opportunities and fair market pricing via The Medicinal Honey ChannelTM, which incorporates quality control testing, strictly enforced storage and packing protocols, and the production of quality-assured honey that is tamper-evident sealed and track-and- trace labelled, for customers to trace its provenance from plant to hive to jar.

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