Want funding for innovation and sustainability projects?

At Catalyst we have a very good track record in helping companies obtain funds for innovation and sustainability projects.  We have worked with clients to access in excess of $12 million of funding from various sources.  Some of the options are outlined in this article and we will be updating this resource regularly.


Callaghan Innovation R&D Funding

Callaghan Innovation have research and development grants available, including:

  • Research & Development Growth Grants: These on-demand, three-year grants provide 20% public co-funding for qualifying firms’ eligible R&D expenditure, capped at $5 million per annum.
  • R&D Project grants: These are primarily targeted at businesses that do not receive an R&D Growth Grant, for example, businesses with smaller research and development programmes and businesses new to R&D. Project grants typically provide 30-50% public co-funding ranging from $5k -$250k.
  • R&D Student Grants: Designed to support New Zealand undergraduate and postgraduate students to gain and develop their technical skills in a commercial research environment, while bringing capability into New Zealand businesses.


AGMARDT is a not-for-profit trust that supports leadership, innovation and research capability within the agribusiness sector. They provide funding through schemes for activities including:

  • International market development
  • The development and implementation of innovative agribusiness solutions
  • Leadership and governance development
  • Support to bring key international experts and speakers in the industry to New Zealand
  • Technology transfer assistance 

National Science Challenge - Science for Technological Innovation

The National Science Challenge for Technological Innovation is putting out a call for Seed Project proposals. Seed Projects are about clever science applied to a potentially disruptive technology area. 

Any New Zealand-based researcher not involved with the Challenge whose project isn’t already funded can apply.

Each successful application will receive up to $100,000 per year for a maximum of three years.
In 2016 the Challenge will fund 8-10 projects with some or all of the following characteristics:

  • Alignment to Challenge themes (not  Portfolios or Spearheads)
  • Novel stretch science
  • Potential to Contribute to New Zealand’s economic growth
  • Social science aligned to building New Zealand’s innovation capacity

Visit the Callaghan Innovation website to find out more.

Māori Innovation and land development

Te Pūnaha Hiringa: Māori Innovation Fund

This is a new $2 million per year fund, which will assist Māori collectives to gain the understanding and knowledge needed to realise the economic potential of their assets. 

The Whenua Māori Fund

The Whenua Māori Fund is now open for applications for Māori land projects that will:

  • Assess land use capability
  • Explore land potential/productivity
  • Provide education and training for owners
  • Identify land use options and improved land management practices
  • Develop business and action plans; and
  • Overcome constraints to Māori land development.

The Whenua Māori Fund will be managed by Te Puni Kōkiri.


Sustainable Farming Fund

The Sustainable Farming Fund (SFF) invests up to $8 million a year in applied research and projects led by farmers, growers, or foresters to support projects that contribute to improving the financial and environmental performance of the land-based productive sectors. Projects can include, but are not restricted to:

  • Applied research and development
  • Demonstration projects
  • Information, knowledge and technology transfer
  • Technical investigations supporting improved use and allocation of water
  • Identifying barriers to, and options for, improved land use and management
  • Improving decision support
  • Adding value and exploring market opportunities.

Applications are annual and the funding round opens in August and closes in October.

If you would like more information about any of this funding, or how Catalyst can assist you, please contact Malcolm Garnham.

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Aug 31, 2017

August 2017 Newsletter
View our August 2017 newsletter.

May 31, 2017

May 2017 Newsletter
View our May 2017 newsletter.

Apr 26, 2017

Export Regulations Compliance Workshop

About 15 regulatory managers from a wide range of sectors spent a stimulating morning sharing and learning about exporting regulations in the complex world of food.


Dec 16, 2016

Promoting healthy foods without falling foul of the Fair Trading Act

There is a real focus in the food industry on producing food that is enjoyable, convenient and healthy for consumers. It’s important to know how to promote healthy foods without falling foul of the Fair Trading Act. We recently worked with Viberi, a producer of New Zealand organic blackcurrant berries, on the labelling of their product.


Dec 14, 2016

When is a good idea a viable business opportunity?
We all have good ideas – but how do we know if they will make a viable business? This article explains what a feasibility study involves, and how one could help you assess the viability of your idea. Read more...

Dec 9, 2016

First Access Floor EPD in Australasia

Catalyst is excited to have worked with ASP Access Floors Pty Ltd to undertake a full life cycle assessment of its flooring system, gaining the first Environmental Product Declaration (EDP) for a flooring system in Australasia.


Dec 9, 2016

Catalyst team news

The Catalyst team has been busy, from participating in Climathon to working on agricultural aid in Pakistan and being invited to peer review country GHG inventories for the UNFCCC, this item will update you on what we’ve been up to.


Dec 9, 2016

Sustainability reporting for NZX listed companies

Sustainability reporting is encouraged, or mandatory, for listed companies on many overseas stock exchanges, and it looks like New Zealand will soon be following suit. We take a look at the state of play in NZ and what it means for listed companies in NZ.


Oct 3, 2016

Farewell to Malcolm

After 15 years with Catalyst Malcolm is moving to the Bay of Plenty and back to his roots in horticulture to take up a role as general manager with PlusGroup Horticulture.


Oct 3, 2016

Blackcurrants make Korean TV

Catalyst applied our food expertise to a unique project when a Korean television crew landed in New Zealand at short notice to make a programme about blackcurrants.

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