Indigenous-Owned Yaala Sparkling in Aspley Secures Shark Tank Deal

Yaala Sparkling
Photo Credit: Supplied

Yaala Sparkling, an Indigenous-owned beverage company based in Aspley, recently clinched a $125,000 investment deal on the popular TV show “Shark Tank.” 

The company crafts unique, healthy, and alcohol-free drinks infused with real native Australian ingredients, sourced from Indigenous wild harvesters and local farmers. Tara Croker, co-founder of Yaala Sparkling, aims to bridge the gap between ancient Indigenous knowledge, culture, land, and native plants by offering sparkling water infused with genuine native Australian botanicals.

Derived from the Wiradjuri language, “Yaala” translates to “the present moment.” Yaala Sparkling’s mission is to establish an Indigenous-owned presence in the native food industry and increase First Nations representation in the sector.

The native foods and botanicals industry is rapidly growing, estimated to be worth up to $50 million annually, yet less than 2 per cent of businesses in this sector are Indigenous-owned. The company is committed to working with First Nations suppliers throughout its supply chain, including wild harvesters, local farmers, and artists, as part of its dedication to preserving traditional knowledge and investing in Indigenous communities.

Yaala Sparkling
Photo Credit: Supplied

Dr. Catriona Wallace, the investor who backed Yaala Sparkling, expressed her enthusiasm for the business.

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“My reason for investing in Yaala Sparkling is that the business and product fill a currently unmet need in the soft drink industry. Indigenous-inspired and Australian native plant-flavored sparkling water will be hugely successful, not only in Australia but internationally,” Ms Wallace said. 

“The care, crafting, and quality of these drinks are second to none, and the entrepreneurs are exceptional. I have worked with many Indigenous-led businesses in the past, and I am so thrilled to be teaming up with Mel and Tara to bring this business to scale.

“We are thrilled to have Dr. Catriona Wallace as an investor in Yaala,” Ms Croker said. “Her deep knowledge and experience will be valuable in taking our business to its next stage of growth.”

Yaala Sparkling
Photo Credit: Supplied

Founded in early 2023, Yaala Sparkling has already secured Australian liquor store Dan Murphy’s as a retailer. The company currently offers two flavours: Lemon Myrtle & Native Blossom and Davidson Plum & Waratah. 

Lemon Myrtle is known for its superfood properties, while Davidson Plum boasts exceptional nutritional value with more lutein than avocado, more antioxidants than blueberries, and 100 times the Vitamin C of an orange.

“Yaala’s infused sparkling water is a healthy alternative to alcohol or soft drinks for any occasions as they are sugar-free and only use real native ingredients that are packed with benefits,” Ms Croker said. 

The “Shark Tank” victory positions Yaala Sparkling to expand production at scale and grow nationwide, bringing native botanical-infused beverages to more Australian homes, parties, and events.

Published 13-Sept-2023