The province has announced an additional $300,000 through the Buy BC program to help producers take sales online.
The new funding, administered by the Investment Agriculture Foundation of BC, will “support industry-led Buy BC e-commerce activities” by providing up to $5,000 to successful applicants. The intake period will be just two weeks, from May 15 until May 29, or until the funds are completely allocated.
“The application window is going to be short as the aim is to get the funding to clients ASAP,” staff with IAFBC told Country Life in BC.
Applicants must have at least two years of business revenues, be licensed to do business in B.C. and be growing or processing one or more products in the province. The funding will support at least 60 projects, though the list of eligible projects means the number will likely be far greater.
IAFBC notes that eligible costs include fees associated with listing products on existing e-commerce platforms or associated with online payment systems for e-commerce activities (credit card fees are excluded).
Packaging costs associated with online shipments up to a maximum of $2,000 are allowed. Costs incurred to promote online ordering are also allowed, to a maximum of $1,000.
With many agri-food businesses from wineries to food processors offering direct sales, the latter two are likely to be popular categories.
Projects must be implemented and complete between June 8 and September 30.
The program follows $55,000 in funding announced March 27 to assist BC Association of Farmers Markets members launch online stores on a platform provided by Ontario tech firm Local Line.
For more information on how to apply, visit https://bit.ly/2YYKhYc.