1. What is the Bioresource Processing Alliance?

The BPA is an alliance between Plant and Food Research, AgResearch, Callaghan Innovation and Scion that aims to expand New Zealand’s export opportunities by adding value to biological resources.  We also tap into researchers in universities to undertake projects.  Operations and project delivery are overseen by a general manager and science leadership group made up of senior researchers across the four research partners.

2. Which sectors does the Bioresource Processing Alliance (BPA) work with?

Forestry, marine, agriculture, horticulture, dairy, wool and meat processing sectors are covered by the BPA.

3. How much funding is available through the BPA?

Funding totalling around $2.4m per annum is available for technical and industry development. A large percentage of this will be offered as co-investment into specific business opportunities. There is no limit on funding available per project but feel free to contact us to discuss your specific needs.

4. How much and what type of co-funding is required from the industry partner?

Cash co-funding is required and in-kind co-funding is welcomed. The proportion of co-funding is expected to increase the closer a product gets to market but aim to contribute of a minimum of around 25% cash co-funding. Where in-kind co-funding is provided, the goods, services and information, etc must be described and valued. It may include the industrial partner’s work to develop and launch the product/process/technology, such as the marketing, operational and business inputs.

5. Who can apply for funding?

Individual businesses, business groups, industry bodies, EDAs, local and regional councils are all eligible but the proposal must be submitted by one of the BPA Partners, or a New Zealand university.  Please be aware that 100% of the funding for projects (co-funding plus the BPA’s funding) goes to the researchers undertaking the project – not the company.

6. How will my application be assessed?

The BPA assesses individual projects based on the opportunity’s value, market potential, technical readiness, IP position, value chain integration and partner relationships, financial robustness, environmental performance and risks as well as broader benefits.  The amount and quality of information required depends on the project stage.  There may be cases where it is more appropriate for the BPA to facilitate applications for R&D funding through other sources, such as Callaghan Innovation, rather than co-investment from the BPA.

Criteria for Selecting BPA Projects  [209 Kb PDF]

A One-page Guide for Additional Support for New Zealand Companies Developing Co-products [449 Kb PDF]

7. Can I use BPA funding for our company’s technical staff?

BPA funding enables industry partners to access BPA and university members, technical facilities, research and processing knowledge and expertise, and scale up capabilities.  A private company’s technical staff can not be funded by the BPA.

8. Can students work with the BPA?

Yes. Please see our section on Student Projects under ‘Funding & Tools’.

9. What types of projects does the BPA fund?

The BPA funds two types of projects:

  • Commercial product/process/technology development.
  • Undergraduate internships, and Masters and PhD scholarships.

10. What does the BPA look for in project applications for product/process/technology development?

In assessing new projects, the BPA considers:

  • The existing bioresource stream’s volume and current sales value/disposal costs.
  • The product(s)/process/technology that might be commercialised from the bioresource stream and indicative volumes and values of these.
  • How the product(s)/process/technology might be developed and commercialised.
  • If there is an industrial partner committed to commercialising the opportunity. The industrial partner could be a business, group of businesses, industry body, economic development agency, or local or regional council.
  • If the project involves collaboration between one or more BPA partners and/or a university.  This is not a prerequisite for funding but is encouraged

11. How are product/process/technology development projects funded?

The BPA uses a stage-wise approach for development projects and companies can do multiple stages in one project or over subsequent projects.  The Technical Readiness Levels (TRL) projects fit into are:

  • TRL 0 Idea. Unproven concept, no testing has been performed
  • TRL 1 Basic research. Principles postulated and observed but no experimental proof available
  • TRL 2 Technology formulation. Concept and application have been formulated
  • TRL 3 Applied research. First laboratory tests completed; proof of concept
  • TRL 4 Small scale prototype built in laboratory environment (‘ugly’ prototype)
  • TRL 5 Large scale prototype tested in intended environment
  • TRL 6 Prototype system. Tested in intended environment close to expected performance
  • TRL 7 Demonstration system operating in operational environment at pre-commercial scale
  • TRL 8 First of a kind commercial system. Manufacturing issues solved
  • TRL 9 Full commercial application.  Technology available for consumers