The funding can cover up to 50 per cent of marketing costs. The Mushroom Bureau, for example, won £2.2m in funding to help run its three-year campaign to promote fresh mushrooms in the UK.
To qualify, the marketing activities must be aimed at increasing information on - and sales of - products of EU origin in specified non-EU countries.
These countries are known as "third countries" and include places like South Africa. Australia, India, Russia, Serbia and Turkey.Applications for funding are submitted to the European Commission once a year by RPA.
Eligible products include:
- Wines with a protected designation of origin or a protected geographical indication and wines with an indication of the wine grape variety;
- Fresh and processed fruit and vegetables;
- Live plants and ornamental horticulture products;
- Protected designation(s) of origin, protected geographical indication(s) or traditional speciality(ies) guaranteed in accordance with Council Regulations (EC) No 509/2006 (OJ L 93, 31.3.2006, p1) or (EC) No 510/2006 (OJ L 93, 31.3.2006, p12); and
- Organic farming products in accordance with Council Regulation (EEC) No 2092/91 (OJ L 198, 22.7.1991, p1)
Applications for funding must be with RPA by Thursday 31 March 2011. A standard application form has been introduced by the European Commission. Applicants are advised to follow it carefully and include all the necessary details. The application can be found at www.rpa.gov.uk.