Buy BC Cost-Shared Funding

Buy BC Cost-Shared Funding is available for activities that increase the demand for, and sales of, BC agri-food and seafood products within the Province.

Program Information

The Buy BC Partnership Program, delivered by IAF on behalf of the BC Ministry of Agriculture, Foods and Fisheries, has two components: licensing and cost-shared funding. It is designed to increase the competitiveness of B.C.’s agri-food and seafood industry in the domestic market by supporting local marketing efforts and the use of the Buy BC brand.

The Buy BC Partnership Program aims to achieve the following outcomes:

  • Enable industry to undertake sector or product specific Buy BC marketing activities to increase local market share, product sales and consumer awareness;
  • Ensure consumers can easily identify B.C. agri-food and seafood products at the point of sale;
  • Build and maintain Buy BC brand recognition; and
  • Build a greater awareness of, and demand for, local food and beverage products across the province.

 

Applicants to the 2021-22 Buy BC Partnership Program (cost-shared funding component) were notified by email of funding decisions on May 21, 2022. Please remember to check your junk folders.

There was an overwhelming response to this popular program, with almost 200 applications submitted; 69 applicants have been successful and we are pleased to be working with them to execute their projects. If you would like to discuss your application, whether successful or not, please contact buybc@iafbc.ca.

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Program Overview

Once an applicant has been approved for a Buy BC logo license, they can apply for funding to help them undertake sector and/or product specific Buy BC marketing and promotional activities across the province. All organizations need to register themselves through IAF’s new online application portal and complete an eligibility screening before gaining access to the program application forms.

Applications for Buy BC Cost-Shared Funding (for the 2021/22 funding cycle) are accepted until April 7, 2021, with successful projects starting on June 1, 2021.

  • 1

    Logo License

    Applicants must have a valid Logo License prior to applying

  • 2

    Register

    First time using IAF's online portal? You need to register.

  • 3

    Check Eligibility

    Complete Eligibility screening through the online portal

  • 4

    Complete Application

    Complete and submit a funding application via the online portal.

Eligible Applicants

To be considered eligible for the cost-shared funding component of the Buy BC Partnership Program, applicants must:

  • have been approved for a Buy BC logo license (Can’t find your Logo License number? Contact licensing@iafbc.ca);
  • be able to provide a minimum percentage of the total project budget in cash as follows:
    • 50% for producers, processors, cooperatives, agriculture fairs and farmers’ markets
    • 30% for industry associations, boards, or councils;
  • have greater than $30,000 in annual revenue for the past two years (applicable only for producers, processors and cooperatives).

All applicants must register their organization to IAF’s online Portal and successfully complete an eligibility screening before gaining access to the Buy BC Cost-Shared Funding application.

NOTE: If you are exclusively a Retailer, Wholesaler, or Distributor are NOT eligible for cost-shared funding, but can apply for a Buy BC Logo License. See Buy BC Partnership Program for more details.

Eligible Activites

Eligible Activities & Expenses

For a project to be funded under the Buy BC Partnership Program, an application must include one or more of the following activities. All project activities must be completed and fully paid for between June 1, 2021 and March 4, 2022 or according to project completion dates outlined in your funding contract. Expenses are paid for upfront by the funding recipient and reimbursed by IAF following the submission of a project report. More information on this can be found below.

Note: translation and interpretation fees to target the following activities to non-English speaking audiences in B.C. are considered eligible expenses.

Labelling or Packaging Products with a Buy BC Logo

– Designing labels/packaging which include the Buy BC logo

– Printing product labels/packaging which include the Buy BC logo

– A maximum of $20,000 per applicant

Marketing Collateral and Promotional Materials

– Designing, developing, and printing Buy BC-branded marketing collateral and promotional items

– A maximum of $5,000 per applicant

B.C. Focused Market Development Tradeshows and Fairs

– Participating in virtual or in-person tradeshows, food fairs, and/or sales expositions in B.C. that target consumers and/or food service/ institutional/retail buyers

– Includes securing booth space, designing/printing Buy BC-branded booth graphics, and shipping Buy BC-branded marketing collateral to the event

B.C. Focused In-Store Demonstrations and Promotions

– Conducting in-store product demonstrations within B.C.

– Conducting in-store retail/restaurant/ food-service promotions within B.C.; Includes promoting your organization’s Buy BC certified products using in-store displays and signage, shelf-talkers, and/or promotional materials

– Delivering consumer-focused, Buy BC-branded contests

Print and Broadcast Advertising

– Developing and producing Buy BC-branded broadcast and print advertising campaigns

– Includes hiring graphic designers, photographers, advertising agencies, and/or other related contractors to develop and/or print Buy BC-branded newspaper, magazine, newsletter, transit, vehicle, and/or billboard ads; developing media plans; purchasing advertising space

Online Advertising and Social Media

– Developing and producing Buy BC-branded online advertising campaigns;

– Includes hiring graphic designers, photographers, videographers, ad agencies, and other related contractors to add a Buy BC presence to an existing or new website;

– Developing and/or delivering Buy BC-branded online adverts, including social media promotion

– Developing media plans

– Purchasing advertising space

– Maximum online advertising costs at $15,000 per applicant (i.e social media ads buys for Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram)

Maximum Funding for Eligible Expenses

After completing an eligibility screening through IAF’s online portal, applicants will be notified how much funding they can apply for under the program.

NEW!  In additional to maximum eligible funding per applicant, there are several eligible expenses that will be capped for the 2021/22 funding cycle. The figures below relate to program contributions, not overall activity costs.

Product labelling/packaging: maximum of $20,000 per applicant.

Marketing collateral and promotional materials: maximum of $5,000 per applicant. This applies to promotional materials for branded apparel/merchandise used by staff for outreach activities.

Online advertising costs: maximum of $15,000 per applicant. This includes social media ad buys for Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.

Staff wages: maximum of $2,000 for each producer/processor/cooperative applicant; $10,000 for associations.

NOTE: staff wages will only be considered an eligible cost if directly tied to the implementation of project activities.

Ineligible Activities & Expenses

The following activities and costs are not eligible under the Buy BC Partnership Program:

– Expenses over the maximum funding caps outlined previously

– Leases or agreements with suppliers outside the project period

– Activities that take place before the project start date or after the project completion date

– Market research, including experimental or theoretical work which is undertaken to acquire new knowledge without a commercial or specific application in view

– Marketing plans

– Subsequent Packaging. Design, tool & dye, and printing production costs for a first run of packaging materials are eligible.

– Buying, starting or expanding a farm or business

– Purchasing capital items (e.g. land, buildings, fences, equipment, tradeshow booth hardware, computers, mobile phones, tools, printing plates, seed, livestock)

– Funds to sponsor a third-party activity

– Product for sampling or sale

– Costs associated with giveaways

– Promotional products/materials planned for re-sale, contests or gifts

– Stakeholder engagement or membership drives

– Product or new brand development

– Direct income support

– Lobbying or influencing government

– The normal operations of a business or organization

– Website/IT systems upgrades and hosting fees. Only the cost for adding specific ‘Buy BC’ elements to a website are eligible for cost-share.

– Building and implementing an e-commerce tool or website

– Any activities that may be considered to denigrate other products or commodities (e.g. farmed vs. wild salmon; organic vs. conventional agriculture, etc.)

– Membership fees

– Cannabis-related activities

Program Timeline

Application

Before submitting an application, please review all the information listed below paying special attention to the Notifications & Obligations. Requirements of a funding recipient and the criteria for how your application will be evaluated are outlined. Applications to the Buy BC Partnership Program are competitive. Each application received prior to the application deadline will be scored and ranked according to the evaluation criteria and funded on that basis.

Before You Apply

Applicants must have a valid logo license before applying for cost-shared funding. Can’t find your Logo License number? Contact licensing(at)iafbc.ca.

All applicants for the 2021/22 intake will need to confirm their eligibility for the program through IAF’s online portal. Please create an account and register your organization well in advance of the closing date. You will be able to complete an eligibility check once you have done so.

Applicants are encouraged to include only activities that they are confident will be completed on time and within budget.

Completed application forms must be submitted through IAF’s online portal by 4:30pm PST on April 7, 2021. Late submissions will not be accepted. Once submitted for approval, your application form and budget cannot be changed.

Review the Program Information

Please read through this website to ensure you understand the objectives of the program and what your organization is eligible for. Review the list of ineligible costs to ensure that your project is fully eligible and ready for assessment.

A complete Program Guide is available for download. If there is a discrepancy between the Program Guide (PDF) and this webpage, the webpage takes precedence.

Gather Quotes for Large Budget Items

Activities that you would like to include in your project with costs over $5,000 require supporting quotes. We are aware that these quotes may expire before the project begins on June 1, 2021; however, we require them to confirm the details of your project costs. Quotes are not required for budget items less than $5,000.

Locate your Buy BC Logo Licensing Number

Your logo licensing number is required to apply for Buy BC Cost-Shared funding. It was sent to you via email with your Logo Licensing details.

Can’t find your Logo Licensing number? Contact licensing(at)iafbc.ca.

Complete a Project Application Form and Budget

IAF Project Managers are available from March 23 to April 6, 2021 to book a consultation call and assist you with advice and feedback regarding your draft application. Your funding application will consist of two pieces:

  1. An application form that details your project activities, objectives and timelines – including your Logo Licensing number
  2. A project budget that states how much you plan to spend on each activity

Please upload a draft application form and budget to the online Portal before your scheduled call. IAF staff will require these materials in advance to review during your timeslot.

Apply

The application window for the Buy BC Cost-Shared Program is now closed.

Notifications & Obligations

Funding Notifications and Contracts

Complete applications will be reviewed by IAF Program Staff and then adjudicated by IAF Directors in May 2021.

If an application is approved, IAF will inform the applicant of the details of the decision and any associated terms and conditions via email. The applicant will then enter into a Contribution Agreement with IAF which outlines the obligations of each party for the approved project.

If an application is not approved, the applicant will receive a written response from IAF with reasons for the decision.

Funding Acknowledgements

All marketing and communications materials produced as part of your project require approval from IAF to ensure program funding has been acknowledged appropriately. Communications materials that you must submit to IAF (communications(at)iafbc.ca) for approval before they are produced include:

  • Labels and packaging materials
  • Print ads
  • Radio ads
  • Television ads
  • Paper ads for mailing
  • Digital ads (email, search engine marketing, social media, videos etc.)
  • Print collateral such as brochures, rack cards, and flat sheets
  • Website updates

If a program client does not submit their communications materials to IAF for approval before they are produced/distributed, they run the risk of that item not being eligible for reimbursement.

Reporting Requirements

Successful applicants will receive a reporting template along with their fully executed Contribution Agreement before their project start date. This template must be filled out and submitted to IAF along with all project invoices for the project to be considered for funding reimbursement.

Project-specific reporting deadlines will be outlined in each program participant’s Contribution Agreement. It is important that all project reports are submitted on time and with all required information.

Expenses will be reimbursed based on the submitted receipts, the approved project budget and the corresponding cost-share ratio.

Changes to Contracted Projects

Projects are approved by the IAF Board based on the stated objectives, scope of activities and the applicant’s capacity to carry out the work. Once a contract for the project has been established and fully executed, we are not able to make repeated adjustments to the approved budget or set of activities.

Exceptions may be made for situations that arise outside of the client’s control such as a cancelled event or natural disaster. A change in the company’s marketing strategy or operations does not constitute a valid reason for adjusting an approved project budget. Clients will forfeit any funding tied to activities that they are unable to complete in the stated timeframe.

Any changes to projects under contract will need to be approved in writing by IAF before they are made. Activities undertaken that have not been pre-approved are not eligible for funding.

Evaluation Criteria

Applications will be reviewed and scored against the evaluation criteria below:

Past project reporting

Considerations for Evaluation

  • If the applicant has had a project funded by IAF previously, did they complete all of the project reports on time?
  • Were they responsive and professional in their communications with IAF Staff?

Past performance on IAF-funded projects

Considerations for Evaluation

  • If the applicant has had a project funded by IAF previously, did the project meet its stated objectives?
  • Were the activities completed on time and within budget?
  • Did the applicant request multiple revisions to the project for items that were within their control?
  • Did previous projects meet targeted results for sales, or goals for advertising etc.?

Market Planning and Research

Considerations for Evaluation

  • Has the applicant completed a marketing and/or export plan
  • Does the market planning/research align with project objectives and/or activities?

Project Activity Details

Considerations for Evaluation

  • Are the project activities well-defined? Clear timelines, clear deliverables etc.
  • Does it seem that the activities can be completed within the allotted budget and timeframe?

Project Budget

Considerations for Evaluation

  • Does the budget contain any ineligible costs under the program?
  • Are budget line items reasonable and within industry standards?
  • Are large budget items (i.e. $5,000 and more) supported by quotes?

Targeted Results Align with Program Objectives

Considerations for Evaluation

  • Does the project objective and activities align with Program objective?
  • Are targeted results in line with project activities?

Work Plan Structure

Considerations for Evaluation

  • The timeframe given for activities is reasonable

Have a Question?

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Program Guide

For a PDF version of the program details please download the Program Guide.

Note: All details are presented on this webpage. If there is a discrepancy between the Guide and the website, the website take precedence.

Book a Consult Call

Consultant calls are available between March 23 and April 6, 2021. Please upload a draft application to the online application portal prior to your call so the Project Manager can review it with you.