The Commercialization stream provides for-profit companies, co-operatives and Aboriginal groups with access to repayable funds for agri-based projects that:
- commercialize or adopt innovative agricultural, agri-food or agri-based products, technologies, processes and services;
- establish, expand, or modernize a facility to commercialize or adopt such innovative agricultural, agri-food or agri-based products, technologies, processes or services for domestic and/or international markets;
- implement marketing opportunities related to the commercialization or adoption project.
Interest-free, repayable funding of up to 50% of eligible project costs to a maximum of $10 million per project is available to help increase the competitiveness and sustainability of the agricultural, agri-food or agri-based sector.
Total government funding (federal, provincial/territorial and municipal) for the Agricultural Innovation Program (AIP) eligible costs cannot exceed 75% of those costs.
The following costs are eligible under the AIP Commercialization stream if they are incurred by the recipient and if they, in the opinion of the Minister, are reasonable, incremental, and required to carry out the eligible activities to which they relate:
- goods and services and all related shipping and transportation costs;
- labour including wages/salaries and benefits, specific per diem fees, and contract/consulting costs;
- rental, lease of facilities, equipment or machinery;
- materials/consumables needed to undertake the project;
- licenses and permits;
- costs of work related to compliance with the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act; production of materials required to fulfill obligations under the agreement, including translation and production of materials in the second official language;
- building purchase, renovation, site improvement, leasehold improvements and construction costs; machinery, equipment, and software purchase and installation costs;
- start-up costs, including interest capitalized during construction, insurance during construction, fees and charges for operation of equipment for adjustment and calibration, and training; and
- marketing costs, including development of marketing plans, hiring of marketing expertise and other related activities; and
- other reasonable costs directly related to the project, at the discretion of the Minister.
- capital items not specifically required for the execution of the project;
- refundable portion of the Goods and Services Tax/Harmonized Sales Tax, value-added taxes, or other items for which a refund or rebate is received;
- any portion or any cost or assistance that, in the Minister's opinion, exceeds the fair market value for that cost item or assistance;
- any cost, such as amortization that would not result in a direct, out-of-pocket expense for the recipient;
- land, goodwill, and existing equipment or buildings owned by a related party; research and development costs; and
- any other expenditure not specifically listed as eligible or otherwise approved to be eligible.
Payments to Recipients
Payments will be made based on claims submitted to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) for eligible costs incurred by the recipient in accordance with the terms of the Contribution Agreement. Each claim must be supported by details of the costs being claimed. All claims must be certified by an authorized official of the recipient.
Successful applicants will be required to provide periodic financial, work plan progress and performance reports as required under the terms and conditions of the Contribution Agreement with AAFC. Annual performance reports will be required during the project work phase and for a minimum of three years after project completion, and the applicant's financial statements will be required annually until such time as the repayment period has ended.
Contribution funding under the Commercialization stream is fully repayable. The recipient shall repay the contribution funding by equal payment installments to the Crown over a period of up to ten years following project completion. This period may be shorter depending on factors such as, but not limited to, the useful life of the asset purchased using the funding from this program.
Repayment will normally begin one year following the completion of the project. Repayments must be completed within 10 years of the program end date.
No interest is payable with the exception of interest charged on late payments and debts owed to the Crown, should such situations arise.
In cases where buildings, machinery and equipment are constructed or purchased as part of the project, a recipient must obtain written approval from AAFC for any transfer of ownership of all or a part of a building, machinery or equipment purchased with program funds until all obligations in the Contribution Agreement, including repayment, have been met. To enable AAFC to determine if a proposed transfer can be approved, based on AIP objectives and funding criteria, the recipient must provide AAFC with advance written notice of any proposed transfer of ownership of all or part of a building, machinery or equipment purchased with program funds, the name and address of the transferee, and any other information deemed necessary by AAFC at minimum 30 days prior to the proposed transfer.
Retention of Ownership
In cases where buildings, machinery and equipment are constructed or purchased as part of the project, the buildings, machinery and equipment must be retained by the recipient for the duration of the project, including the repayment period, unless otherwise agreed to in writing by AAFC. In the absence of written approval, full repayment of the AIP contribution funds would come into effect immediately upon disposition of AIP funded buildings, machinery and equipment.