Fisheries and Seafood Scheme – a first trawl through the guidance | PKF Francis Clark
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Fisheries and Seafood Scheme – a first trawl through the guidance

As a member of PKF Francis Clark’s Food and Drink team I was particularly interested to hear of the launch of Fisheries and Seafood Scheme.

This is a new grant scheme that “will provide £6.1 million over the next 12 months to support England’s seafood sector, coastal communities and marine environment.”  The scheme is being administered by the Marine Management Organisation (MMO).

Overview

Although this has been announced it appears as though different aspects of the grant scheme open / will open at different times and I set out below some high-level information as gleaned from the Guidance page on GOV.UK website

Two notes that maybe summarise the machinations of the scheme

  • Not all areas of the scheme will always be open for support. Some areas will open later and for a defined period, through a funding round
  • Initially the fund will focus on projects that help businesses adapt to life outside the EU’s Common Fisheries Policy and recover from the impacts of Covid-19

I am therefore expecting further announcements as areas of the scheme open for applications.

I would suggest that interested parties keep an eye on the MMO website or see if you can sign up to receiving updates from them.

Eligibility

The scheme is available to applicants whose businesses and/or vessels are registered in England and the four categories of potential applicants include:

  • An individual or business engaged within commercial/recreational sea fishing, aquaculture, or processing
  • A new entrant to the industry or unemployed individual that could benefit from knowledge/skills in fishing/aquaculture activities

Projects sought

The scheme will provide funding for a range of projects that deliver the following seven strategic priorities:

  • Promoting a sustainable sector for future generations
  • Protecting the marine environment, by reducing the environmental impacts of the sector
  • Delivering world class science and innovation
  • Supporting coastal communities to promote economic growth and social inclusion
  • Supporting the reform of stock and quota management to ensure a balance between fishing opportunities and capacity
  • Enhancing the value chain through marketing and processing, opening the potential for English businesses home and abroad
  • Developing industry infrastructure which is essential to supporting sustainable growth across the whole sector

Activities that can be supported

There are a number of detailed guidance notes linked to Guidance page on GOV.UK website. These include general guidance and also guidance for a number of types of project. These guides set out what you can and cannot apply for each project type, including:

  • Fishing Activities
  • Energy Improvements
  • Aquaculture
  • Shore-Based facilities
  • Health and Safety
  • Marketing
  • Processing
  • Marine Litter

I have had a look at the Guidance for Processing to get a feel for the detail and summarise the contents below:

Projects include: ·         Contributions to energy saving or reductions in the impact on the environment, including waste treatment

·         Projects relating to the processing of by-products resulting from main processing activities

·         Projects relating to the processing of organic aquaculture products

·         Projects leading to new or improved products, processes, or management and organisation systems

Result indicators and Evaluation indicators List of indicators and information you must provide for each (if applicable).  These include:

·         Change in net profits

·         Change in number of work-related injuries and accidents

·         Change in value and volume of first sales

·         Increased energy efficiencies relating to carbon catch and transport

Funding available £1,000 to £600,000
Grant intervention rates Vary per applicant type, for example

·         Private (SME): 50%

·         Private (Non-SME):30%

There is also an extensive list of activities that the scheme cannot support.

PKF Francis Clark

We have a lot of experience in assisting clients in grant applications; specifically, those where the application requires financial modelling.

On the subject of financial modelling I was curious to see that there is a guidance note for “Support for Partnerships, Advisory Services, Training and Encouraging New Entrants” which includes funding potentially for “Providing advisory services” and specifically “…advisory services that assess the viability of projects”.  When that stream of funding opens up, we will see if we can utilise to assist our clients.

FEATURING: David Armstrong
Dave started working in corporate finance with a ‘Big 4’ firm in 1993, focusing on helping businesses secure the optimal amount of grant funding towards… read more
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