Fisheries & Aquaculture Business Grants: 9 Funding Programs Currently Available

If you’re looking for grants for a fishery or aquaculture business, you’re in the right place!

Because we have the most comprehensive, up-to-date guide on grants and other types of funding for entrepreneurs in fisheries and aquaculture.

In this guide you’ll learn what’s available, eligibility requirements, how much you can get, and much more!

What Can Fisheries & Aquaculture Business Grants Be Used For?

Fisheries & Aquaculture business grants can be used to pay for many aspects of starting or running a business. Here are some of the uses that are covered by programs in our grants database:

  • Starting or expanding a fishery or aquaculture business
  • Covering operating expenses including inventory purchases, rentals, professional fees, payroll and more
  • Training and skills development for your employees
  • Research and development of innovative tools and approaches to estimate and/or collect information on the abundance, distribution, or biological characteristics of fish populations

See the sections below for a complete list of grants and other funding programs available for the fisheries & aquaculture industries.

How Much Grant Money Can I Get for My Fisheries & Aquaculture Business?

In our database we currently have grants of up to $40,000.

Am I Eligible for a Fisheries & Aquaculture Business Grant? Common Eligibility Criteria

Two of the most common questions we get asked at Ontario Business Grants are “Am I eligible?” and “How do I qualify?”.

We analyzed the Fisheries & Aquaculture business grants in our grants database, and these are the most common qualifications we identified:

  • Be for-profit organizations engaged in the management, conservation, protection and promotion of oceans and freshwater in Canada
  • Be small or start-up companies that have a clear business model and credible indication of traction in the fisheries & aquaculture industries
  • Have project activities taking place in Canada
  • Be businesses pursuing opportunities in the marine servicing industry

Note: these are just the most common eligibility criteria.

Fisheries & Aquaculture Business Grants for Ontario: Current Grants Available

In the table below we list the grants currently available to Ontario fisheries & aquaculture businesses.

To learn more about each program, just click the program name and you’ll be taken to a web page that provides detailed information on the program, including eligibility, the dollar amount of the program, and how to apply for the grant:

Grants for Ontario Fisheries & Aquaculture Businesses

Other Types of Funding for Fisheries & Aquaculture Businesses

Our goal is for this guide to be a complete source of funding information for Fisheries & Aquaculture businesses. So, in this section you’ll find all the other money programs (besides grants) that are available to Fisheries & Aquaculture businesses:

  • Subsidies for Fisheries & Aquaculture Businesses

A subsidy is a type of financial assistance usually provided by the government in order to promote a social good or an economic policy. Wage subsidies are the most common subsidies.

In the table below you’ll find the subsidies currently available for Fisheries & Aquaculture businesses:

 Subsidies for Fisheries & Aquaculture Businesses

  • Investment Programs for Fisheries & Aquaculture Businesses

An investment is a form of financing where capital is provided in exchange of ownership in the company.  It is an alternative to conventional methods of raising capital (loans, issuing stocks, selling bonds) and the good thing about it is that you do not have to make monthly payments. Common investment includes private equity and venture capital.


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    Here is the government’s investment program currently available for Fisheries & Aquaculture businesses:

     Investment for Fisheries & Aquaculture Businesses

    Name of ProgramAmountType

    Best Fisheries & Aquaculture Business Grants, Subsidies & More

    While there are lots of good programs available, below we highlight some of the best grants, subsidies & more for Fisheries & Aquaculture businesses:

    Best Government Grant for Fisheries & Aquaculture Businesses

    Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) – Ecosystems and Oceans Science Contribution Framework

    DFO’s Ecosystems and Oceans Science Contribution Framework provides funding to build expertise in ocean and freshwater science and technology in areas that support the mission of the Department to increase its understanding of ocean and freshwater environments. Through this, DFO seeks to better protect, sustain and restore fisheries resources as well as the aquatic ecosystems that support them.

    Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) – Indigenous Marine Servicing Initiative (IMSI)

    DFO’s Indigenous Marine Servicing Initiative (IMSI) is designed to increase Indigenous participation in the marine industry supply chain, which supports Indigenous communities and commercial fishing enterprises (CFEs) that want to expand and diversify into Indigenous marine-related service industries.

    National Research Council of Canada (NRC) – Cluster Support Programs

    Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada launched the Global Innovation Clusters to support business-led innovation and large-scale collaboration among industry leaders, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and post‑secondary institutions, to develop and scale high-potential technologies in advanced manufacturing, agri‑food, clean technology, digital technology, health, bioscience and clean resources, infrastructure and transportation.

    Cluster support programs:

    • Advanced manufacturing (Funded collaborative R&D in support of Canada’s Next Generation Manufacturing Supercluster. automation and robotics; machine vision; inspection and sensors; simulations and modelling; additive manufacturing; and advanced materials manufacturing);
    • Digital Health and Geospatial Analytics (Funded collaborative R&D in support of Canada’s Digital Technology Supercluster in the areas of: Artificial intelligence and digital enablement for health – using artificial intelligence and digital technologies to improve healthcare delivery and connect it to real-world, evidence-based clinical research; and Geospatial Analytics – using digital geospatial technologies to solve compelling challenges in areas such as agriculture, forestry, environmental monitoring, transportation, and clean energy);
    • Ocean (Funded collaborative R&D in support of Canada’s Ocean Supercluster in the areas of: bio assets; intelligent ocean assets; coastal resilience; and pollution remediation);
    • Sustainable Protein Production (Funded collaborative R&D in support of Canada’s Protein Industries Supercluster in the areas of: genetics and genomics; pre‑breeding crop development and plant technologies; microalgal and macroalgal protein; microbial communities; processing and ingredients; food safety, traceability and sustainability);
    • Artificial Intelligence (AI) for Logistics (Funded collaborative R&D in support of Canada’s AI- Powered Supply Chains Supercluster (Scale AI) in the areas of: transportation and warehousing; condition of infrastructure and goods; cybersecurity for logistics; and Canadian logistics AI‑powered modelling.

    Best Non-profit Grants for Fisheries & Aquaculture Businesses

    Canada’s Ocean Supercluster (OSC or Ocean Supercluster) – Ocean Startup Challenge

    The Ocean Startup Challenge helps turn entrepreneurial ideas or technology into a wave of opportunity! With the world’s longest coastline, globally-renowned experts, research facilities, a steady flow of talent, and ample government programming and support, Canada is the right place to start and grow a successful ocean tech company. For 2022, the Ocean Startup Challenge is focusing on idea/early stage ocean startups with a TRL of 4 and below, and supporting innovators who are leveraging Canadian ocean assets and capabilities to develop technologies that can be applied to global ocean problems.

    Genome Canada – Genomic Applications Partnership Program (GAPP)

    The Genomic Applications Partnership Program (GAPP) funds downstream research and development (R&D) projects that address real world opportunities and challenges identified by industry, government, not-for-profits and other “Receptors” of genomics knowledge and technologies. GAPP projects are collaborations between academic researchers and Receptor organizations, and are co-funded by Genome Canada, Receptors and other stakeholders.

    Best Non-profit Subsidies for Fisheries & Aquaculture Businesses

    Clean Foundation – Science Horizons

    The Science Horizons Internship Program, generously funded by Environment and Climate Change Canada, is a wage subsidy initiative that matches graduates, under the age of 30, with positions across Canada that help combat climate change.

    Project Learning Tree Canada (PLT Canada) – Green Jobs Program

    Project Learning Tree Canada (PLT Canada) offers a 50% or 80% wage match, with up to $32,000 CAD in reimbursements, to employers hiring youth aged 15-30 into Green Jobs. A Green Job is one that supports nature-based solutions for a more sustainable planet. Green jobs are typically involved in, but not limited to, jobs in the forest sector, parks, conservation, natural resource management, environmental education, sustainable food systems, climate change, carbon sequestration, species maintenance and recovery, water quality and quantity, and more.

    Best Non-profit Investment for Fisheries & Aquaculture Businesses

    Creative Destruction Lab – Investment

    Creative Destruction Lab (CDL) is an objectives-based program for massively scalable, seed-stage science- and technology-based companies.

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