Weston Seeding Stronger Communities


Seeding Food Innovation grants 2017

George Weston Limited and Loblaw Companies Limited are delighted to launch our Food Innovation grants 2017. We will provide seed funding for trans-disciplinary research proposals that address food and health challenges that will impact Canadians and are of global concern OR offer debt/equity investments to business-focused projects that have a real social impact both in Canada and globally.

Letter of Intent deadline: Monday, April 17, 2017 2:00pm EST
Proposal deadline: Friday, September 15, 2017
Award Announcement: November 2017

Funding & Eligibility

  • Funding of up to $150,000 per project is available for up to two years within the field of food innovation
  • Funding will only be awarded to institutions that are Canada Revenue Agency registered
  • Principal Applicants must be at the level of Postdoctoral Fellow or higher OR have an Administrative Supervisor that has a permanent post at recognised Canadian post-secondary institution

Review Criteria

  • Scientific Rigour and Innovation: The project must be of a rigorously scientific nature, while advancing or challenging current practices. In addition, research ideas should have a clearly defined focus and objectives. We are also open to trans-disciplinary work that moves beyond the classical boundaries of nutrition and agriculture. For example, there may be an emphasis on economics, social science and/or behaviour.
  • Vision and scope: While the project is to be primarily executed in Canada and must be significant to Canadian food and health systems, successful projects will also be able to demonstrate relevance and impact in other regions, or at a global scale.
  • Likelihood of success: How well-suited are the team and environment for this work? How likely is the hypothesis to be proven? How likely will the project be at developing a novel, practical and scalable solution to a food-related problem?
  • Commitment to real social impact: Projects must not be stand-alone science but demonstrate that they will make a real impact on communities, industry, policy, education etc.

Important things to know about our Funding

  • ** New this year**
    We have funding available for both research as well as early-stage ventures.
    After the LOI stage, research proposals will follow a different evaluation stream than applications seeking a debt/equity investment.
  • Funds are provided contingent on meeting milestones. If your project is selected, funds are provided in tranches as experimental milestones are successfully completed.
  • Our application process is interactive. You will likely receive feedback on your application and may be asked to consider making modifications.
  • Many projects are declined at the Letter of Intent (LOI) stage. Only ~15% of LOIs are invited to the Proposal phase, so that applicants and reviewers spend their time on Proposals that have an excellent chance of being funded.
  • We provide more than funding. Our grantees may also benefit from expert advice from our scientific advisors, suggestions from seasoned retail executives with deep experience into customers needs, and networking opportunities.

Additional Information

Please refer to the Funding Guidelines for more detailed information about this grant program.

We welcome inquiries about our funding at Food.Innovation@Weston.ca or 416-965-5435.