BC Agrifood & Seafood Market Development Program

The B.C. Agrifood and Seafood Market Development Program helps B.C. agri-food producers, agri-food and seafood processors, co-operatives, and associations to identify, access, target and develop market opportunities to increase their sales outside of B.C.

Program Announcement

The application window for the BC Agri-Food and Seafood Market Development Program though our new online portal is open until November 30, 2020 at 4:30pm.

Don’t wait to start your application! Organizations average two days to submit a completed application. It takes time to complete the registration, eligibility check, application and budget; some require additional time to consult with their suppliers and project partners.

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Program Overview

This five-year cost-shared program, funded through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, supports the development of marketing skills and plans, the creation of market research and export-focused promotional materials, and participation in export-focused market development activities, including reaching new customers through interprovincial/ international trade shows.

Eligible Applicants

Eligible applicants are producers, processors, cooperatives, industry associations, boards and councils that meet the following minimum criteria: 

  • have a head office in B.C. or be entitled to do business in B.C.;
  • be selling or marketing a product that is grown or processed in B.C.;
  • contribute a minimum percentage of the total project budget in cash;
  • meet minimum total annual gross revenues (i.e. sales) for the most recent two years.

Note: A program eligibility check is completed in the first step of the application process.

Conveyor belt, juice
Tomatoes

Eligible Activities

A BC Agrifood and Seafood Market Development Program application must include one or more of the following activities to be considered for the program:

  • Market information and research;
  • Market development planning;
  • Market skill training;
  • Export development activities (all products must be market-ready).

For a breakdown of all eligible activities & costs, download the Program Guide

Program Guide

All applicants are encouraged to review the Program Guidelines to ensure they understand all eligibility and application criteria.

Project Funding Amounts

Program funding is limited, all applications will be assessed on a competitive basis and only those that score highly against the evaluation matrix will go forward for funding.

 

Industry associations, boards and councils: eligible for up to $75,000 in program funding per year. The program can cover up to 70% of total cash costs of the project, the remaining 30% must come from the applicant. 

Producers, processors and cooperatives: eligible for up to $50,000 in program funding per year. The program can cover up to 50% of total cash costs of the project, the remaining 50% must come from the applicant.

Please refer to the program guide for funding caps within the 2021-22 program cycle. 

Apply

The application window is now open! To apply or to determine your eligibility for program funding, please click on the “Apply Now”.

Allow yourself time to register your organization, complete an eligibility check and access the application forms before deadline – most organizations average 2 days from registration/eligibility check to application and budget submission. The application window closing date is November 30, 2020 at 4:30pm PST.

Pre-qualified Consultants

List of service providers that have been pre-qualified to provide Market Research Services and/or Strategic Market Development Planning Services for your funded project.

Eligible Training Courses

List of pre-approved courses that can be included in applications requesting funds for Market Skills Training.

Have a Question?

Our team is here to support you, contact us today! Please remember to upload your draft application and budget to the online Portal before requesting a consult call.

Program Brochure

Download the program brochure for an overview of the Program

FAQ

I’ve applied for funding previously, do I still have to register my organization to the online Portal?

All applicants, regardless of whether or not they have applied for and received funding from IAF in the past, need to confirm their eligibility for the program through IAF’s online portal.

Do I have to (re)apply for Part A?

No. “Step 1” of the online Portal replaces the Part A application. The eligibility of your company will be assessed during this stage of the application, including the maximum amount of funding you are eligible to apply for.

How do I book a consult call with IAF staff?

Once you have uploaded a draft application form and budget to the online Portal, please email marketdevelopment@iafbc.ca to request a booking link. Consultation calls will review your funding application and budget for eligibility.

When will my application be approved for funding?

Complete applications will be reviewed by IAF Program Staff after November 30 with funding decisions being made by the Technical Review Committee in February 2021. All applicants will be notified via email of funding decisions.

Program funding is limited. All applications will be assessed on a competitive basis and only those that score highly against the evaluation matrix will go forward for funding.

When can I schedule my project activities? (Start/End Dates)

Approved project activities (expenses) cannot take place before the contracted start date: April 1, 2021. Project competition dates are unique to activity/workplans. All activities must be completed, paid, with final project reports submitted to IAF by March 15, 2022.

What should I include in the Budget 'Expense Details'?

Information provided should match receipts/invoiced expenses you would be including in a project expense claim for this activity.

For example: “Activity #1, Marketing Campaign” Expense Details should include name of service provider or contractor, # adverts/months/hours, cost per ad, name of magazine or social media platforms etc.

How do I upload my draft application to the online Portal?

In “Step 5 – Review” of a new application, you will be able to upload your application form and budget. Note, each attachment that you would like to submit with your application must be loaded as a separate note/attachment under the section “Supporting Documents”.

What is eligible for cost-sharing?

All cost shared expenditures must satisfy the eligibility criteria outlined in the Program Guide. Eligible project activities/expenses are grouped by cost category: 1) Market Research/Information; 2) Market Development Planning; 3) Export Development; 4) Market Skill Training.

Please review the list of eligible/ineligible expenses, including those expenses deemed as “in-excess”.

Does the $20,000 tradeshow cap include travel?

No. The $20,000 cap per applicant for tradeshow attendance includes registration fees, booth costs, set-up fees etc. to a maximum of two (2) tradeshows. The $5,000 cap per applicant is for all travel-related costs (airfare, transportation, accommodation etc.).

I want to hire a consultant for Market Research/Planning activities that is not listed. Is this eligible?

No. Only those consultants that have been pre-qualified by the BC Ministry of Agriculture to conduct Market Research/Information and/or Market Development Planning activities will be eligible for cost-sharing.

Where can my project activities take place?

Please refer to the Program Guide for complete details.

All Export Development activities must target markets outside of British Columbia (interprovincial/international).

Market Research and Planning activities, however, may focus on or include the B.C. (domestic) market.

 

How are funding payments issued?

If your project is approved, project payments will be released upon receipt and validation of all invoiced expenses for activities completed.
Only eligible, approved costs will be considered for funding reimbursement; a percentage of the claimed expense will be cost-shared according to your project’s funding ratio.

Where can I get an application form?

The application form and budget template are available for download through the online Portal.

Once an applicant has successfully completed program eligibility screening, the Application Form and Budget Template are available for download through “Step 3 – Program” of a new application. Documents are linked in the text listed as “Program Application Form” and “Program Budget Template”– simply click these links and download.

Are virtual tradeshows part of the two (2) tradeshow cap?

Yes. Whether you will be attending a tradeshow in person or virtually, the $20,000 cap applies to attendance at a maximum of two (2) tradeshows during the 2021-22 program cycle.