If you are a researcher, startup, or SME, get repayable financing of up to $250,000 to cover up to 40% of the costs of demonstrating the commercial viability of innovative natural products or technologies.
The Proof-of-Concept Program supports projects that help to establish the commercial feasibility of innovative natural products or technologies (Technology Readiness Levels (TRL) 4-9) to advance development, commercialization, or de-risk subsequent investment.
NPC defines natural products or technologies as biologically based innovations that benefit people, animals and the planet, and can be applied to a range of industries, including: food production and value-added agriculture; bioproducts and sustainability; human nutrition, health and wellness; animal health and nutrition; and water and waste management.
Canadian SMEs and start-up companies and academic research institutes can receive up to 40% of the cost of the proof of concept project to a maximum of $250,000 over a maximum 18-month project period. The applicant will be required to contribute 60% of the cost over the project period.
The Program does not support basic research, but rather supports activities that demonstrate commercial potential via animal, field, demonstration, or human trials.
For companies, the Program is intended to demonstrate commercial feasibility of products and technologies.
- Canadian incorporated SME, start-up company, or academic research institute.
- Applicant has a novel pre-commercial (TRL 4-9) natural product or technology.
- SMEs and start-up companies must have the potential to achieve $10MM to $15MM in annual revenue within a reasonable period for the market or sector.
- Products or technologies being developed within academic research institutes must address an industry/sector challenge that has a significant market potential.
- Potential for significant economic, social, health and/or environmental benefits.
- Technological advancement and benefits to the natural products ecosystem across Canada.
- Technical feasibility of the project.
- Potential for commercialization in Canada.
- Potential spillover benefits to more than one sector.
- Potential for improving the representation of women, visible minorities, and Indigenous peoples in the natural products ecosystem.
- A member of Canada’s Natural Product Innovation Cluster.