Government of Canada, Provincial and Territorial Partners, Re-open the Canadian Fish and Seafood Opportunities Fund

DARTMOUTH, NS – Canada’s fish and seafood sector is essential to our collective food security and our economy. In light of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Canadians and businesses, the need to promote Canadian food products at home and abroad has never been greater.

Today, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans, and the Canadian Coast Guard, the Honourable Bernadette Jordan, together with participating provinces and territories, re-opened the Canadian Fish and Seafood Opportunities Fund (CFSOF) to support the industry in accessing new consumer markets.

Launched in 2018, the CFSOF is a national cost-sharing federal, provincial and territorial program that helps the fish and seafood sector address new market-access issues and identify branding opportunities, in order to maximize the value of Canada’s world-class fish and seafood.

To reflect the needs of our partners, applicants will now have the chance to submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) to the CFSOF at any time, making the program more nimble and adaptable to changing circumstances brought on by COVID-19. Eligible applicants who meet the principles, criteria, and objectives of the program will then be invited to submit a full proposal following the EOI stage.

We continue to work with our provincial and territorial funding partners, Indigenous partners, and stakeholders, to help guide investment priorities, and identify opportunities and potential partnerships under CFSOF. Through this collaboration, we will leverage and promote Canada’s brand and reputation for producing high quality, legally and sustainably sourced fish and seafood products to both domestic and international consumers.

The Canadian Fish and Seafood Opportunities Fund

The Canadian Fish and Seafood Opportunities Fund (CFSOF) was first launched in December 2018. It is a national marketing program that supports industry organizations in their efforts to address key market-access issues, as well as branding and promotion opportunities for Canada’s world-class fish and seafood sector, through national and regional initiatives.

The CFOSF is a federal, provincial, and territorial governments’ cost-share program of $42.85 million (70% federal and 30% provincial) and funds eligible activities supported by participating provinces and territories (British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Northwest Territories, Yukon, Ontario, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland and Labrador). Eligible applicants under the CFSOF are not-for-profit industry organizations (e.g. associations and Indigenous groups) operating on a national, regional, or sector-wide basis in the fish and seafood sector who are active in, or supporting, marketing activities related to the sector.

During the current COVID-19 context, the CFSOF is another tool to help the fish and seafood sector adapt to changing consumer demand and build new markets.

Who Is Eligible?

The $42.85 million Canadian Fish and Seafood Opportunities Fund enables the Government of Canada and provincial and territorial partners to support their industries’ priority projects and help Canadians working in the fish and seafood sector by creating jobs and developing more opportunities for Canadian products.

In general, not-for-profit industry organizations (e.g. associations) operating on a national or sector-wide basis may apply. Eligible projects must focus on one or more of the following areas:

  • developing and implementing Canadian fish and seafood branding strategies;
  • supporting industry branding, promotion and advertising activities in domestic and/or international markets;
  • addressing existing or emerging market access issues and meeting consumer demands for product quality and sustainability;
  • undertaking market research and intelligence to facilitate entry or expansion into new and existing markets; and
  • supporting industry capacity development activities to increase collaboration and cooperation.

How To Apply

  • The CFSOF has a two-step application process:
    • Step 1 – The expression of interest process allows applicants to discuss their project proposal, ask questions about the program and provide the program with a synopsis of their project.
    • Step 2 – Those who have been successful with their expression of interest will be invited to submit a full proposal and application.
    • Interested applicants should visit the CFSOF website and click on “Apply to the fund”.

For more information