B.C. Agri-Business Planning Program

The B.C. Agri- Business Planning Program offers two distinct streams of support for agri-businesses:

  • Specialized business planning to enable producers and processors to make more informed decisions and strengthen their business
  • Disaster recovery planning to help producers implement an immediate and long-term disaster recovery plan

Eligible applicants can access up to $5,000 for individuals and $30,000 for groups for business planning services from a Qualified Business Consultant (PDF).

Annual funding for the program is limited. A confirmation of eligibility does not guarantee support from the program. We encourage you to submit your Project Proposal and Action Plan as soon as possible to confirm whether your project will be funded. Applications are reviewed on a first-come first-serve basis.

Qualified Business Consultants are preapproved by the B.C. Ministry of Agriculture. Applicants are required to pay a non-reimbursable $100 upfront fee directly to the consultant.

Application intake is now closed. Next intake is expected in April 2019.

Eligible Activities

Specialized Business Planning

  • Business Structures: identification and evaluation of potential business structures
  • Production Economics: development of production systems and/or strategies
  • Business Strategy: development of a strategic plan
  • Financial Analysis: development of financial analysis
  • Value Added Ventures: development of a business plan for a new value added venture
  • Risk Assessment and Mitigation: assessment and development of a business and financial risk management system or strategy
  • Human Resources: development and implementation of a strategic Human Resource Plan
  • Succession/Transition Planning: development and preparation of a Farm Succession Plan

Each activity has a list of minimum deliverables (DOCX) the Qualified Business Consultant will deliver.

This program does not include funding for marketing research or marketing planning. For assistance with marketing funding, check out the B.C. Agrifood & Seafood Market Development and Buy BC Partnership programs.

Disaster Recovery Planning

Eligible disaster recovery activities include a combination from the above list (typically risk assessment and mitigation) tailored to applicants who were an active farming entity and living in an area where the local government issued an evacuation alert or order due to a disaster since 2017.

The application fee is waived for these applicants.

Successful applicants also receive support from Qualified Business Consultants who specialize in debt mediation or have extensive coaching experience. These consultants help producers who have experienced a life altering event, such as a fire or flood implement an immediate and long-term disaster recovery plan.

Eligible Applicants

  • Primary Agriculture Producer producing agricultural products which are 100% grown or raised in B.C. with current B.C. Assessment Authority farm status
  • Food processor processing food, beverage or agricultural products which are processed and packaged in B.C. with 51% or more of the direct cost of producing the product in its final form (i.e. the sum of raw materials, direct labour, variable processing, and packaging) originating in B.C.
  • Primary Agriculture or Food Processor Cooperatives

Producers, processors and cooperatives must have reported total annual gross revenues greater than $30,000/year in the previous year to Canada Revenue Agency.

Application Instructions

Step 1: Complete the eligibility application (DOCX) and submit via email as a word document.

Step 2: Once you have received confirmation of eligibility,  use the Qualified Business Consultant list (PDF) to arrange an initial meeting

Step 3: Complete an action plan (DOCX) using the Taking Stock workbooks or with guidance from a Qualified Business Consultant. Applicant pays $100 upfront to consultant, except in cases of disaster recovery where the fee is waived.

Step 4: Review and approve the Project Proposal (DOCX) created with a Qualified Business Consultant using your completed action plan (DOCX)

For group applications each group member must submit their own eligibility application. However, only a single action plan and project proposal is required for groups.  

Note: Work started on B.C. Agri-Business Planning Program projects prior to receiving approval from the B.C. Ministry of Agriculture will not be eligible for support under this program.

Next Steps

Step 1: B.C. Ministry of Agriculture staff approve the project proposal (DOCX)

Step 2: Project is completed as outlined in the project proposal (90 days). Ministry staff reserve the right to conduct mid project review and feedback from applicant(s).

Step 3: Qualified Business Consultant submits final draft report to the applicant. The applicant approves the draft report and signs claim form

Step 4: Qualified Business Consultant submits the approved claim form (DOCX) and final report by email.

Step 5: The B.C. Ministry of Agriculture pays Qualified Business Consultant directly

Step 6: Program staff contact applicant for feedback