Thank you for your interest in the Funding for Sectors stream of the Place to Grow: Agri-Food Innovation Initiative. The latest application intake for this stream is now closed. Applicants will be notified once decisions have been finalized.


Ontario's government is helping to grow the province's agri-food and agri-products sectors by launching the Place to Grow: Agri-food Innovation Initiative - a program which will help drive innovation, reduce red tape, and address industry priorities. This new initiative includes the "Funding for Sectors" stream and will support agriculture and food value-chain partners in address emerging sector challenges and opportunities to create sector wide benefits.

Funding for Sectors

Funding supports agriculture and food value chain partners by offering cost-share funding opportunities to address identified industry priorities and outcomes for Ontario in the following areas:

Project Categories

Protection & Assurance

Food Safety and Traceability
Animal Health
Plant Health

Environmental Stewardship

Soil Health and Water Quality

Economic Development

Funding for Sectors Program Terms and Conditions

How to Apply

Eligible applicants can apply for Funding for Sectors programming beginning November 4, 2020. The Funding for Sectors Application form can be found here. The additional form for applicants that are not the Lead Entity is available here. This cost-share intake will remain open until 4p.m. Eastern Standard Time on November 26, 2020.

Note: the form must be filled out using Adobe software, such as Adobe Reader or Adobe Pro. Other PDF reader software, including your internet browser, is not compatible with this form. If you do not already have Adobe software on your computer, you can download a free version here:

Completed applications, including all required documentation, should be submitted by email to If you submit an application by email, but do not receive an acknowledgement within two business days, please contact OMAFRA at: 1-877-424-1300.

FAQs for Place to Grow: Funding for Sectors

Q1. What changes have been made to the program for this intake?

The COVID-19 outbreak has created challenges for the agri-food sector, and that is why we are reviewing all programming under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership to ensure it addresses sector needs. That includes the Place to Grow: Agri-food Innovation Initiative, which helps our farmers, processors, business and sector organizations innovate and grow.

To address these needs, we have added a new project category to the Place to Grow: Funding for Sectors program:

  • The Recovery/Contingency Planning and Response category will support projects that build the industry's capacity to recognize and manage risks through recovery and contingency planning and implementation for a sector, or for a significant or defined portion of a sector, value-chain or region in response to challenges/opportunities identified during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Q2. Will you be accepting applications under the Strategic Solutions stream of Place to Grow during this time period?

The COVID-19 outbreak has created challenges for the agri-food sector, and that is why we are reviewing all programming under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership to ensure it addresses sector needs. That includes the Place to Grow: Agri-food Innovation Initiative, which helps our farmers, processors, business and sector organizations innovate and grow.

We are not currently accepting applications for Strategic Solutions programming. Application intake dates for Strategic Solutions programming will be released once they are finalized.

Q3. Are activities related to the aquaculture sector eligible for cost-share funding?

Activities related to aquaponic food production, and to aquaculture, seaweed, fish and seafood production and processing are ineligible for Canadian Agricultural Partnership (CAP) funding with the following exceptions, which are eligible:

  • International marketing for fish and seafood products is eligible for CAP funding
  • Traceability for fish and seafood products is eligible for CAP funding

Q4. Can costs paid by one partner to another be considered eligible?

No, partner to partner billing is ineligible. This supports the project eligibility requirements under the program guidelines, which restrict eligible expenditures to the costs of goods and services purchased from suppliers that are at arm's length from lead entity and project partners.

Lead entity and project partners must have an arm's length relationship from one another and have a vested interest in the project. Project partners influence the project directly (by providing cash investments, resources, project oversight, and/or expertise) so that they can benefit from the project outcome. Although vendors/suppliers may contribute resources and/or expertise to the project, their contribution is not solely vested in meeting project outcomes.

Q5. What constitutes a "new and advanced" project and its activities?

Applicants are encouraged to provide as much detail as possible to demonstrate that the project and related activities are new and advanced.

New and advanced projects and related activities are those that have not been widely adopted by the Ontario agriculture, agri-food or agri-products sectors.

Q6. Is there any supporting documentation that I can submit to strengthen my application?

Complete applications are evaluated based only on the information submitted. Those that meet eligibility requirements are assessed using merit assessment criteria. Supporting documentation can help demonstrate how a project meets the merit criteria by demonstrating:

  • Project costs are substantiated (e.g., quotes, in-kind cost breakdown, details on specific budget activities, etc.)
  • A detailed work plan is in place for the project that shows the internal and external resources that will support project implementation
  • Formal studies and/or plans (business, marketing, research, etc.) are in place to support project implementation
  • Letters of support from relevant and unbiased parties are highly valued documentation as they demonstrate the proposed project can be successfully undertaken and are supported by industry.

Q7. For the Place to Grow - Funding for Sectors, what are the lead entity responsibilities from a program perspective?

The lead entity must:

  • Be a legal entity located in Ontario, and the project must benefit the Ontario agriculture, agri-food and agri-products sector.

Application Process:

  • Complete the Application, on behalf of the project partners and provide a Canada Revenue Agency Business Number as part of the application process
  • Sign the application and be bound by the Terms and Conditions under the Place to Grow cost-share program
  • Be the primary point of contact for the application

Project Implementation:

  • Be capable of entering into a Contribution Agreement with the Province on behalf of all project partners, if the project is ultimately approved
  • Register through the Province of Ontario's Transfer Payment Common Registration (TPCR) system (an online registration tool)
  • Manage the project
  • Have financial capacity to cash flow all project costs, receive all project funding paid by OMAFRA
  • Provide the required documentation to ministry for reimbursement of funding
  • Prepare and submit progress and final reports
  • Communicate and share project information with all project partners.

Q8. For Place to Grow - Funding for Sectors, what are the responsibilities of project partners from a program perspective?

Two or more legally recognized entities that have an arm's length relationship from each other and are working together as partners on a project may apply, provided each entity:

  • is engaged in the project and will be contributing cash or in-kind resources towards the project;
  • is involved in the agriculture, agri-food and agri-products sector; and
  • is in compliance with all Requirements of Law and agrees to remain in compliance with all Requirements of Law for the duration of the project.

Applicants must be represented by a lead entity capable of entering into a funding agreement with the Province of Ontario.

Please see program guidelines for details.

Q9. For the Place to Grow - Funding for Sectors, why do lead entities need to have financial capacity for the total project cost?

Projects are contracted with the lead entity only. In addition, program funding is provided on a reimbursement basis, and therefore the lead entity must be able to cash flow project costs up front.

When considering financial capacity, it is important to note the following:

  • In-kind contributions are considered eligible costs up to the limit of 15 per cent of the approved value of eligible project costs. In-kind contributions must be identified and approved in the application for an approved project. Payments for in-kind contributions will be made after the project is successfully completed.
  • Stacking is eligible up to 100 per cent of eligible project funding.

Q10. For the Place to Grow - Funding for Sectors, should I submit quotes and/or estimates to support my work plan in the application?

Yes, the 'Funding for Sectors' application highlights that each project activity must be itemized to a cost, and that applicants should include quotes, estimates, etc. to support the project activities identified in the work plan.