Program Supports Youth Working in the Agriculture and Agri-food Sector
The Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Youth Employment and Skills program contributes 50% up to $14,000 towards the wages and benefits of a new hire. Eligible employees are Canadian citizens and permanent residents up to 30 years of age who are unemployed, underemployed or students. Positions must be full-time (30+ hours/week), last a minimum of 4 months and provide work experience towards increasing employability in the agriculture/agri-food sector. Applicants that hire youth facing employment barriers (e.g. people living with disabilities, single parents) are eligible to receive an additional $5000.
Up to $15,000 to Hire a Graduate
The ICTC CareerConnect program offers a 50% wage subsidy up to $15,000 to hire post-secondary graduates for information and communication technology (ICT) work placements in Barrie, Peterborough, Toronto, Sudbury, Windsor, Ottawa, St. Catharines and the Niagara Region. Supported positions are full-time, typically last 6 months and include but are not limited to:
- Software & Hardware Engineering
- Software Testing
- Web Design & Development
- Database Administration
- Help Desk & Technical Support
- Computer Programming
- Project Management
- Network Support
- Technical Writing
- Graphic Design
Subsidized employees must be under 30 years old, unemployed/underemployed, and be Canadian citizens, permanent residents or have refugee status. Graduates that currently receive Employment Insurance (EI) benefits, or who have previously worked for the applicant company, are ineligible for funding.
Apply Before Program Runs Out of Funding!
The Business Scale-Up and Productivity Stream (BSPS) offers interest-free loans of up to 35% to a maximum of $10 million for businesses to adopt/adapt innovative technologies, processes and/or services, as well as for investments that lead to business growth. Eligible activities include but are not limited to:
- Developing foreign markets and securing new customers;
- Producing/commercializing innovative products, processes and services;
- Purchasing and integrating leading-edge technologies;
- Employee training and skills development;
- Introducing industries and creating jobs in Southern Ontario communities;
- Facility expansion and modernization.
Funding is available to Southern Ontario companies that have 5-1000 employees and have been in operation for at least 2 years. Eligible expenditures include equipment purchases and installation, facility retrofits, consulting fees, marketing and promotion, as well as project-related employee wages and other expenses. Funding will not be provided for building/land purchases, debt refinancing, or for projects that aim to increase sales to individual consumers. Repayment will begin within one year of project completion; terms/periods will be determined on a case-by-case basis. To be considered for a loan, applicants must request at least $500,000 from BSPS (ie, invest approximately $1.5 million or more) for projects ending no later than December 31, 2023. Projects that support innovation and job creation will be prioritized.
Program Supports Innovation, Business Growth
The Rural Innovation Initiative: Eastern Ontario Regional Stream offers grants of up to 50% to a maximum of $100,000 for projects that support the growth of Rural Eastern Ontario businesses and the economic development of surrounding communities. Eligible projects include but are not limited to:
- Facility expansion and modernization
- Adopting, adapting or commercializing innovative products and processes
- Accessing new markets
- Employee skill development
Eligible expenses include:
- Retrofits, equipment purchases and installation
- Consulting and professional fees
- Employee wages and benefits
- Other project-related expenses
Building and land purchases as well as regular/ongoing operational and maintenance costs are ineligible. The program supports projects ending no later than December 31, 2020, undertaken in one of the following Eastern Ontario regions: 1) Stormont, Dundas & Glengarry 2) Prescott and Russell 7) Leeds and Grenville 9) Lanark 10) Frontenac 11) Lennox and Addington 12) Hastings 13) Prince Edward 14) Northumberland 15) Peterborough 16) Kawartha Lakes 17) Haliburton 18) Renfrew 19) Census subdivisions: Durham, Brock, York, East Gwillimbury, Georgina, and Chippewas of Georgina Island First Nation.
Funding Offered for Projects Costing $20 Million or More
The Strategic Innovation Fund: National Ecosystems Stream (SIF) offers up to 50% grant funding towards the development and commercialization of innovative products, process, and services to facilitate collaboration, sector growth and business scale-up. Activities must be undertaken by two or more project partners (such as universities, businesses, not-for-profits), and lead to improved business competitiveness, expansion and/or the advancement of new technologies. Applications will be assessed under the following criteria:
- Level of innovation
- Economic benefits
- Resulting benefits for Canadians
Only projects requesting funding of $10 million or more will be supported by SIF. Eligible costs include project-related direct labour, overhead, subcontracts, consultants, direct materials, equipment and land/building purchases Please note that securing SIF funding may reduce an applicant’s claim for Science Research and Experimental Development (SR&ED) tax credits as well as other federal funding. Additionally, it is recommended that an applicant investigates any additional tax implications prior to accepting SIF funding.
Grant Funding Supports Agriculture and Agri-Food Sector
The Canadian Agricultural Partnership offers grants of up to 50% (25% to a maximum of $200,000 for equipment) towards increasing the sustainability, competitiveness and prosperity of Ontario’s agriculture and agri-food sector. Eligible companies include equipment and technology manufacturers, food/pet food processors, agricultural-based pharmaceuticals/nutraceuticals, ornamentals (flowers, shrubs) and bio-products manufacturers, as well as other entities involved in the transformation of agricultural commodities and products. Maximum number of applicant employees is 200. Funding is provided for projects that support plant/animal health, food safety/traceability, increased productivity, market development, or business planning/assessments. Eligible expenditures include:
- Productivity Improvement: 25% up to $200,000 to purchase technology to increase labour productivity
- Business Assessment: 50% up to $15,000 for any start-up or scaling-up processing business that wants to identify or determine feasibility of growth and opportunities by analyzing trends, access to capital and business structure
- Business Plans: 35% up to $15,000 for established and new businesses for plans to increase or improve financial sustainability, address growth needs and opportunities, and define concrete next steps
- Marketing Plans: 35% up to $25,000 for established processors
- New Process or Product Development: 35% up to $75,000 for consultants and equipment to satisfy a new demand
- ERP systems implementation: 35% up to $100,000
- Food Safety and Traceability Pre-Audit, Gap Assessment and Planning: 45% up to $3,000 for companies with 100 or less employees
- Food Safety and Traceability System Improvements: 50% up to $75,000 for processors with 100 or less employees
- Food Safety and Traceability Training: 45% up to $1,500 for companies with 100 or less employees.
- Food Safety and Traceability Equipment: 35% up to $10,000 for companies with 100 or less employees
- Ingredient Efficiency and Waste Reduction: 25% up to $75,000 for technology that has been adopted by less than 20% of the Ontario sector
- Labour productivity Plans: 50% up to $25,000
- Domestic Market Development: 35% up to $50,000 for increasing Canadian market
- International Market Development: 35% up to $75,000
- Plant Pest Monitoring and Management Tools and Equipment: 35% up to $100,000
- Preventing Introduction and Spread of Pests through Isolation, Sanitation and Controlling Work Flow: 35% up to $50,000
Costs incurred before receiving approval are ineligible for reimbursement (note: it typically takes roughly 3 months for a decision to be made). Applicants must be based or establishing operations in Ontario, be able to demonstrate potential income of at least $30,000 within three years of applying, plus cannot use awarded funding to undermine other Canadian companies. A maximum of two applications may be submitted per intake. Next intake deadline is May 6, 2019