Kuditj grows with basketball and jerky

Published on : 10/1/19
  • Kuditj, meaning think and reflect, operates as the only Aboriginal owned and operated catering facility in Perth. Kuditj operates in the form of a corporate function, training and conference centre providing both internal and external catering to corporates.

     Kuditj has provided members of the Indigenous community with opportunities to train in hospitality, event management and administration since 2014, while celebrating First Nation connections.

    Owned by non-profit Indigenous organisation PEEDAC, Kuditj represents a unique partnership between Indigenous community and Sodexo to deliver corporate catering offers. Sodexo provides a myriad of support through investment and personnel to allow the business to thrive.

    Recent years have heralded incredible growth for Kuditj, including the release of its first beef jerky ranges in 2017.

    In 2019, the Kuditj brand was celebrated on a national scale for securing in-kind catering sponsorship of the men’s and women’s basketball teams in Perth.

    JERKY LAUNCHED FOR BETTER BUSINESS

    In 2016, Kuditj reviewed its business model to create more sustainability within the business. The answer was found in beef jerky and by mid-2017 Kuditj’s first beef jerky ranges were released.

    The jerky continues to be manufactured by Kuditj, who takes pride in ensuring each piece is as consistently high-quality as the last. The product is hand-made from premium cuts of meat and infused with native Australian flavours.

    Kuditj’s beef jerky is now sold at all 60 Sodexo remote sites across Australia. The ranges boast fun and quirky names with Australian references, such as Ridgey Didge, Camp Fire, Kicking Cow and Honey Bee.

    A SLAM DUNK SPONSORSHIP

    With around five years’ experience in catering, Kuditj took its service offering to a new level in 2019 when, in partnership with Sodexo, it was appointed a catering sponsor for the Perth Wildcats and Perth Lynx teams.

    The partnership saw Kuditj provide around 3,000 high-quality protein and carbohydrate-rich meals to players, coaches and their management teams to support a stellar season in the National Basketball League and Women’s National Basketball League.

    The partnership involved Kuditj working closely with the teams’ Physical Performance Manager to produce meals which would enable their players to achieve optimal performance.

    It was an exciting opportunity for Kuditj, placing them alongside the Perth Wildcats, considered Australia’s most successful sporting team having reached 34 consecutive NBL finals and vying for their 10th championship in 2020.

    This type of sponsorship was a first for Kuditj, with Manager Celia Maiho noting how it had elevated the profile of the catering business, showing how they were flexible and diverse.

    COMMUNITY

    Kuditj is made up of a small, enthusiastic team who pride themself on quality of work and service. The team is made up of seven employees who enjoy not only fulfilling their role, but also experiencing a variety of hands-on work throughout the business, from hospitality and event management to administration.

    As Celia says, Kuditj was built to create opportunities for young people, and that is what the organisation has done through providing training, education and employment pathways.

    SODEXO, WORKING TOWARDS RECONCILIATION

    Kuditj’s success is what Sodexo aspired for when it became involved with the organisation, known as ‘Kuditj Café’, in 2014.

    When the partnership began, PEEDAC invited Sodexo to lend commercial support and operational expertise. Since, Sodexo has helped Kuditj transition from a café to a corporate function, training and conference centre through refurbishment of Kuditj’s historically significant site in Beaufort Street, Perth.

    Sodexo has worked with Kuditj through Aboriginal school-based traineeships, Vocational Training and Employment Centre (VTEC) programs, and cultural engagement with the wider community, along with stocking Kuditj’s jerky across its sites and supporting the organisation’s partnership with the Perth Wildcats and Perth Lynx teams.

    “We couldn’t be prouder of how far Kuditj has come in the past five years, from an Indigenous Perth café to a constantly growing catering business attracting attention from a national audience.”
    - Sean Armistead, General Manager, Indigenous & Community Engagement, Sodexo