The stars of Australian television will be the first to indulge in the local Sugarbag native bee honey, thanks to a special chocolate being created for The 61st TV WEEK Logie Awards.

Held at The Star Gold Coast for a second year running, celebrities staying overnight for the event will discover the honey-infused treat in their hotel rooms and suites as a VIP gift.

It comes after The Star Entertainment Group in April committed to an exclusive long-term supply partnership with the Quandamooka Yoolooburrabee Aboriginal Corporation (QYAC). The deal enables up to 140 hives to be established on the island, with The Star Entertainment Group being the only company outside of the Quandamooka People to access the honey.

The partnership is also creating exciting jobs and training opportunities for the Quandamooka People, like 15 year old Quandamooka tourism trainee and cultural guide, Tu Wai McDonald, who has been learning how to make the handmade chocolates from The Star Gold Coast’s chefs. “Through the partnership, it’s awesome that I get to meet and learn from many of The Star Gold Coast chefs – they’ve taken me on a tour of their different restaurants and cuisines, and I’ve learnt some of the different cooking techniques they use such as tempering the chocolate for the TV WEEK Logie Awards,” McDonald said.

The Star Gold Coast Executive Sous Chef, Sarah Jewell, said the the native been honey will deliver a local bush flavour to complement the handmade dark chocolate. “It’s always a chef’s dream to work with native ingredients and we are delighted that this product has come from North Stradbroke Island, literally on our doorstep,” Chef Jewell said. “We are pleased to involve Tu Wai in the process. He’s been learning a few cooking techniques from our Executive Pastry Chef including how to temper the chocolate and inject the native bee honey into the moulds.”

QYAC CEO, Cameron Costello, said he was delighted to learn the native bee honey will be enjoyed by some of Australia’s biggest celebrities, helping promote the Quandamooka People and one of its emerging Indigenous products.

“The TV WEEK Logie Awards has always been a golden night for our Aussie stars, and now we have one of our own stars to showcase and that is our exclusive, locally-harvested Sugarbag native bee honey,” Costello said. “Having our native bee honey showcased this way will also help critically raise our profile on a national stage and that of North Stradbroke Island, where there is an abundance of stunning natural beauty and activities to explore.”

The Star Entertainment Group General Manager Tourism, Food and Beverage, Strategy and Partnerships, Michael Hodgson, said the native bee honey is helping the company continue creating authentic experiences. “We want to give all the celebrities and A-listers a real Queensland treat that highlights our SEQ region and one of the vibrant Indigenous communities that call it home. It’s about creating authentic experiences and food is a fantastic way we can do this,” Hodgson said.

Hodgson said the company has come a long way since they started working with QYAC in 2017 . “We’re proud to help support long term and sustainable development for the Quandamooka People within their local area and for their own people, and the honey partnership is just one of the ways we are working together.”

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