Food processors are eligible to apply for Growth Fund grants from the Rural Development Programme for England of between £35,000 to £500,000. The aim of the grants is to help businesses in rural industries grow and help boost the local economy.
The programme is part of the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development. It is administered by the Rural Payments Agency but the spending priorities are set by the Local Enterprise Partnership of the city region.
Prioritising certain projects
The SCR is prioritising certain projects in the food processing sector and is looking for ideas for exporting, new techniques and processes, increasing productivity, and creating the equivalent of one full-time job for each £25,000 of grant.
It is also calling for ideas that allow farming ventures to diversify into non-agricultural activities, create new services and/or make new products.
Neil MacDonald, chair of the SCR’s Business Growth Board, said: “Enterprise has always been at the heart of what we do in the city region. For businesses that decide to apply, this funding could be invaluable in helping them grow.”
Hundreds of rural businesses
David Grimes, head of the SCR’s business growth team, at the Growth Hub said: “We have hundreds of exciting small rural businesses in this region, and they have lots of talent and fresh ideas. I really would urge any business owner out there to think about applying for a grant if you have an innovation or product that will create growth opportunities.
Business are being advised to sell their idea and explain how their project will benefit the economy and create jobs. Applicants must show there is a real demand for any initiatives to stand a chance of getting a grant.
The grants, which businesses have to put a proportion toward, are applied for on the website
The deadline is 31 May, 2018.