If you run a farm in Canada, you know that agriculture is an important business — and also a risky one. To help farmers and food producers like you diversify income and build strong businesses, the government created the Canadian Agricultural Partnership. The Growing Forward 3 phase of the partnership includes six new programs that cover everything from new innovations to diversity in the industry, all designed to help you stay profitable.
Understanding the Canadian Agricultural Partnership
Canada is one of the top agricultural exporters in the world. As the demand for food increases around the world, it creates more jobs in agriculture and exciting opportunities for you as a small business owner. That’s where the Canadian Agricultural Partnership comes in. The government has pledged to invest $3 billion in six different programs to help farms grow, as well as several business risk management options. The goal is to help you create a strong foundation so you can stay in business. Why does the government care? Farms like yours create jobs, bring in taxes, and help Canada act as a major player in the world food trade. The goal of the partnership is to create growth in the agricultural industry.
What Are the Growing Forward 3 Programs in the Partnership?
AgriMarketing: This program offers funding to help you start to export your farm products to international customers. You can use the money to promote your business and develop your market overseas. If you’re accepted, you don’t have to repay the funds, which come from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada.
AgriCompetitiveness: As its name suggests, this program helps you become more competitive. When you receive funding, you can use it to make your operation safer, grow your farming or food business, or jump on new opportunities. You might also use it to focus on teaching, mentoring, or helping other agricultural businesses learn your best practices. The AgriCompetitiveness program also helps you educate the public about farming and food production.
AgriScience: If you’re working in agricultural science, this program can provide the money you need for research and development. AgriScience allows you to write proposals for clusters, which join industry, government, and universities in a partnership to solve agricultural problems. You can also use the funds for smaller research projects — usually, to solve common challenges you and other businesses face.
AgriInnovate: Do you have an innovative idea that can improve the agriculture industry? If so, you might qualify for AgriInnovate funding. These funds, which you must repay, can be used to develop technology or new processes that can make your agribusiness more competitive or sustainable. You might figure out how to use clean technology in precision farming or add robotics to your grain processing plant.
AgriDiversity: AgriDiversity helps bring more people into farming and agriculture. If you’re a woman or a young person or if you qualify as a member of the Indigenous Peoples, you could qualify for money to help start your business. The program can also help you educate other under-represented people about the industry.
AgriAssurance: Want to increase the health and safety of agriculture products? AgriAssurance can help you get there. With this support, you could develop new systems, standards, or tools to help farmers meet the needs of your customers and the government. This funding must be repaid.
How Can You Apply for Each Program?
You must apply for each of the Canadian Agricultural Partnership programs separately. All of the application instructions are available on the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada website.
Whether you run a small farm or you work in processing agri-food products, the Canadian Agricultural Partnership can be a valuable resource. If you qualify, you could get funding to build your business or develop the next big agriculture innovation.