Rural business funding boost


Following the successful delivery of the Rural Business Investment Scheme, Cornwall Development Company (CDC) has secured a further £450k to build upon the work that has been achieved to date.

The original scheme opened in January 2013 and supported 20 projects across the county with small grants. From £500k of public investment the scheme has leveraged £1.43M of total investment in farming, food and small rural businesses, within 12 months.

The new funds will specifically target agri-food businesses (processing or adding value to primary agricultural, horticultural or forestry products).

Grant rates will vary with funding weighted to support small businesses. Projects must demonstrate proposals that result in business development and growth (creation of jobs, increased efficiency, profitability and benefits to the rural economy).

The funding will support up to 40% of agreed project costs. The grant rate that can be applied for will depend upon the type of activity undertaken by the business, advice will be provided.

Applicants can make a grant request of between £10k and £25k, which means the minimum project size will need to be at least £25k, however grant requests outside these ranges may be considered in exceptional circumstances.

The scheme will be managed by CDC and is part financed by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development, DEFRA and Cornwall Council.

The scheme is now open to expressions of interest. Timescales are tight; funds must be allocated by June and successful applicants must be able to complete project investment and claims by the end of December.

For more information and to access an expression of interest form, click here.