Step 2. Eligibility
Check if you meet the criteria to apply.
You must meet all of the following criteria to be eligible.
- For-profit organizations may include:
- Co-operative (for-profit)
- Commune (for-profit)
- Indigenous (First Nation, Métis, Inuit): A First Nation, Métis or Inuit individual or a First Nation, Métis or Inuit organization. They may include :
- First Nations, Inuit, or Métis for-profit organization
- For-profit organizations may include:
Program priorities and eligible activities
The Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SME) Component will prioritize projects that:
- help Canadian agricultural and agri-food sector (including fish and seafood) SMEs adopt the assurance systems and supporting tools, for the first time, required to meet a specific export opportunity or domestic market opportunity for Indigenous Peoples (for example, with a defined grocery retailer)
The SME component will support activities required to:
- adopt assurance systems and supporting tools to address international market requirements to expand export opportunities, or domestic market opportunity for Indigenous Peoples, for Canadian agriculture and agri-food, including fish and seafood, products.
Eligible activities for the SME component include:
- contracting professional services to obtain the certification for agricultural and agri-food products required to access a specific export opportunity or domestic markets
- the salary of individuals dedicated to working on the development of documents and/or training for such certification
- travelling to enable the certification
- lab testing costs required to obtain the certification or recognition
Note: Costs you incur prior to AAFC approval or the project start date may not be reimbursed by AAFC, and you may be solely responsible for those costs.
Eligible costs are project expenses, claimed or contributed, that fall within the set program cost categories and respect all program limitations. To be considered eligible, all costs must be:
- included in the project application form budget
- related to the activities included in the work plan
- fall within the work plan activities timeframe
For more information and details on cost categories, eligible costs, limitations or instructions, refer to eligible costs.
The SME component will contribute to fostering public trust and building consumer confidence in export markets. It will achieve this by funding industry to adopt assurance systems and supporting tools (such as, third-party certifications) to make verifiable claims to meet export or domestic markets' requirements.
Performance indicators, which are used to measure the relevance and effectiveness of the component will include:
- number of assurance projects approved
- number of target markets accessed
- number of certified schemes completed
The primary outcomes of the program are to:
- build industry capacity to increase public confidence in the food system
- respond to market and regulatory requirements
- meet consumer demands, through the development, integration and improvement of industry-led assurance systems
Resiliency and Public Trust Priority Area of the Sustainable Canadian Agricultural Partnership
The program is under the Resiliency and Public Trust Priority Area of Sustainable CAP. Initiatives under this priority area will deliver a range of results aimed at positioning the agriculture and agri-food sector to improve resiliency and enhance public trust. Key outcomes include:
- improved sector awareness, access, and capacity to adopt assurance systems and their benefits
- enhanced proactive risk management through preparedness and better understanding of patterns and emerging market access requirements
- increased sectoral resilience by helping industry develop and enhance their assurance systems
Public trust, that is, citizens' confidence in how governments and industry operate, is critical for the agriculture sector, as it drives sector competitiveness and impacts consumer food purchasing patterns. To this end, Federal-only Strategic Initiatives under the Resiliency and Public Trust Priority Area focus on enabling the development and implementation of industry-led sector-specific strategies and equipping industry with tools to manage risks and address challenges to resilience and public trust. Specifically, they aim to support the resilience of value chains and supply chains by addressing animal and plant health issues, supporting stronger assurance systems to support sustainability and building greater consumer confidence in Canadian agriculture.