The Program provides financial resources to eligible "persons" (Colorado agricultural and food companies) in the form of a grant with funds to be released on a reimbursement basis. In general, funds will be allocated for projects in the following two broad functional categories.
Funds will be allocated to conduct feasibility studies assessing the potential of establishing an agricultural value-added business project. These studies may address the market for the product, engineering requirements, economic viability, environmental concerns, legal requirements, management, and other necessary business components. Funds may also be utilized to conduct product analyses and provide for technical assistance to explore more efficient systems for processing agricultural products and by-products.
Funds may be provided to conduct marketing, market research, and promotion projects in local, regional, national and/or international markets. Such projects may include, but are not limited to market research, first-time participation in trade shows, translation and development of company and product brochures, web site design, package and label design, consumer and trade communications, and promotions. In general, funding for promotions is limited to new product launches, promotions supporting the development of new sales channels, or promotions which serve to enhance the image of Colorado as a high-quality and reliable supplier of agricultural and food products.
The established maximum award is $20,000 per project. Funds may not be utilized for paying down current debt, general administrative expenses, salaries, or for indirect institutional overhead costs. Similarly, funds may not be utilized for purchasing equipment and construction/building costs.
For purposes of the program, an eligible "person" shall be defined as per CRS 2-4-401 meaning any individual, corporation, government or governmental subdivision or agency, business trust, estate, trust, limited liability corporation, partnership, association, or other legal entity.
When applications are submitted by individuals or businesses, applicants are strongly encouraged to seek the support/endorsement of the project by a local government (i.e., city, county, etc.), local or regional economic development organization, or industry/agricultural association.
For projects featuring fresh fruits and vegetables or bulk agricultural commodities, those products must be grown in Colorado. Similarly, for projects involving live animals, those animals must be born and raised in Colorado. Consumer-ready products (i.e., salsa, chocolates, tortilla chips, wines, etc.) must be processed in Colorado -- preference will be given to applicants whose products contain at least 50 percent of ingredients (by weight) originating from Colorado. Beef, lamb and other meats must originate from animals substantially raised in Colorado.