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Rise Up: Women in Food Growth Fund

August 1, 2018

“Women can lead and excel in our industry,” says Boris Serebryany, President and CEO of Fiera Foods Company. Yet they aren’t always given the chance. Even though women represent almost half of Canadian business owners and contribute $148 billion towards the economy, they remain underrepresented in food manufacturing. In addition, women face barriers when applying for start-up and growth capital. And if the women are newcomers? They face even more hurdles.

To help create a more equitable playing field for women, Food Starter and Fiera Foods, are teaming up to launch The Women in Food Rise Up Fund.  For the next three years, this unique fund will award successful applicants a $5000 infusion in the form of a $3500 cheque and $1500 in Food Starter production hours or accelerator fee credits.

“Women, and especially newcomer women entrepreneurs, so need this kind of support to grow their businesses, and in so doing support not only themselves, their families, and create opportunities for others in terms of job creation or purchasing from others,” says Petra Kassun-Mutch, Executive Director, Food Starter.

What Would You Do with $5000?
While the Rise Up Fund can’t be applied to existing debts, it can be used in a wide range of ways to directly grow your business — from purchasing new equipment, to buying supplies or ingredients. Alternatively, you could put it towards production labour, or jazz up your marketing campaign, including trade shows, social media support, labels, or even website upgrades.

Ready to Rise Up?
If you run a for-profit company that’s 51% women-owned and women-led, have a product in the marketplace generating sales, and have used the Food Starter facility for production in the past 6 months, we want to hear from you. Preference is given to newcomer (someone who had immigrated to Canada in the last five years) and women-led ventures. Click here to apply.

Finalists will be interviewed by a review team consisting of two Food Starter and two Fiera Food representatives. The team is looking for commitment, growth potential, and demonstrated sales growth.

Act quickly. Applications are due August 13, 2018. Finalists will be interviewed August 28th. Successful recipients will be announced September 7th.

 

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