bigstock-various-chocolates-as-a-backgr-48562157With funding through the 5 year Growing Forward 2 Ontario program expected to exceed $400 million, Mentor Works is constantly building its knowledge-base of programs available to its agriculture and agri-food clients.

Important Updates for Growing Forward 2’s Organizations and Collaborations –Project Implementation

Organizations and Collaborations Project Implementation stream offers Ontario agriculture and agri-food SMEs between 5-75% of project costs depending on the innovativeness of the project. During the course of assisting our clients with applications for this Growing Forward 2 Ontario business grants initiative we have uncovered the following clarification on key details of the program:

Clarification of What Defines a Partnership

Mentor Works has received the following clarification on the definition of “a partnership.”

  • When an organization is the applicant, cash and in-kind contributions can be contributed by both the organization and partner(s).
  • A partner is a legally recognized entity contributing cash or in-kind towards the project only when an organization is the applicant.
  • Partners must have an arm’s length relationship from the organization.
  • Partners are required to provide a letter of support confirming their contribution towards the project

Clarification on Eligible Capital Expenses under Growing Forward 2

Eligible expenses under Growing Forward 2 Ontario’s Project Implementation Stream are subject to the following stipulations:

  • Capital reimbursement is capped at $100,000 per project
  • If the applicant and/or collaboration members are a for profit business, the applicant and/or collaboration members must contribute at least 25% in cash (from non-government sourced funds) of the total costs of the capital items

Capital items include:

  • Computers, office equipment, equipment and construction costs for buildings, on-farm and further processing infrastructure and plant upgrades
  • Assets which have been acquired, constructed or developed (including any associated delivery and installation costs) and are not intended for sale in the ordinary course of business
  • Betterments that are expenditures relating to the alteration and/or modernization of an asset that appreciably prolong the items period of usefulness or improve its functionality
  • Costs incurred on or after April 1 of the fiscal year (April 1 – March 31) of the application review date

Clarification of Collaboration Funding Outcomes

Collaboration funding is intended to support projects that demonstrate benefit beyond the collaboration members. This can include, but is not limited to:

  • Ensuring outcomes are shared broadly
  • Engaging industry associations in the project
  • Providing economic benefit for Ontario (contribution to GDP, increased investment, productivity and quality jobs, increased exports, revenues, and the presence of highly competitive and resilient agri-food supply chains in our province)

Updated Details Regarding the Assurance Systems Projects

Now broken down into detailed sections for each of:

  • Food Safety
  • Traceability
  • Animal Welfare

New details regarding:

  • Eligible & Ineligible activities
  • Project Focus and Project Examples

Proving Project Innovativeness

If a client wants to prove their project is innovative, then they may be required to provide a letter from an independent source verifying the innovativeness of the project.

“New” – Insurance Requirement

We also recently received the following information regarding an insurance requirement:

  • Applicants signing agreements with the AAC for their project are required to have comprehensive general liability insurance with coverage for at least $2 million per occurrence.
  • This insurance must show the AAC as an additional insured on the policy and contain the endorsements specified in the agreement and is required to be maintained throughout the term of the agreement.

Growing Forward 2 Organizations and Collaborations –Project Implementation Application Deadlines for 2014

Prospective applicants are also reminded of the following is a list of deadlines for submission of GF2 Organizations and Collaborations –Project Implementation Stream applications:

•          July 3, 2014

•          August 28, 2014

•          October 16, 2014

•          November 9, 2014

•          December 11, 2014

Additional dates will be announced towards the end of the year for 2015 and beyond.

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Mentor Works Ontario Small Business Grants and Loans for Agriculture and Agri-Food Experts

Learn more about government funding opportunities for agriculture and agri-food businesses in Ontario and across Canada by signing up for a complimentary workshop and/or webinar.   Also don’t forget to follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter.

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Written by

Ryan has a BA in economics, an MSc in management, and several published works including two books. As Marketing Analyst at Mentor Works, Ryan enjoys communicating with business owners & executives about government grants and funding available to help overcome obstacles to growth.

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