Understanding how to bring newly identified bush food products to the food industry

Project opportunity

This Earmarked Scholarship project is aligned with a recently awarded Category 1 research grant. It offers you the opportunity to work with leading researchers and contribute to large projects of national significance.

This project will work with four Indigenous communities in Queensland.  The over-arching aims of the project are to 1) increase the economic benefit of the the bushfood industry to Indigenous people and 2) improve the engagement of Indigenous youth in the bush foods of their lands.

The bushfoods we will work with are not those commonly available, but are endemic on the lands of the four communities.  Other parts of the project will work on the agronomic practices to grow the foods commercially, and business development tools for Indigenous ownership of the businesses.

This PhD project will focus on the potential of these bushfoods to be used in food science and technology, to create new products, with unique flavours and textures, and potentially unique nutritional value.  We will need to analyse the bushfoods comprehensively for compounds of flavour, nutrition and safety, and ensure that new products comply with the food safety legislation.  The student will work closely with the Traditional Owners in each community where the bushfood originates from.

Scholarship value

As a scholarship recipient, you'll receive: 

  • living stipend of $32,192 per annum tax free (2023 rate), indexed annually
  • tuition fees covered
  • single Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC)


Professor Melissa Fitzgerald

School of Agriculture and Food Sciences

Email: m.fitzgerald2@uq.edu.au

Preferred educational background

Your application will be assessed on a competitive basis.

We take into account your

  • previous academic record
  • publication record
  • honours and awards
  • employment history.

A working knowledge of food science and technology, and food safety would be of benefit to someone on this project.

The applicant will demonstrate academic achievement in the field(s) of food science or chemistry and the potential for scholastic success.

A background or knowledge of bushfoods is highly desirable.

Latest commencement date

If you are the successful candidate, you must commence by Research Quarter 1, 2025. You should apply at least 3 months prior to the research quarter commencement date.

If you are an international applicant, you may need to apply much earlier for visa requirements.

How to apply

You apply for this project as part of your PhD program application.

View application process