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European Research Executive Agency

How to apply - Promotion of agricultural products

Steps for applying

This page explains the application process for projects co-funded under the Promotion of Agricultural Products. Before you apply, please consult these FAQs.

To apply, you need to follow these steps:

  1. REA publishes calls for proposals in line with the promotion policy work programme. The annual work programmes are based on the EU’s policy priorities, notably the EU Promotion Policy, the European Green Deal and the Farm to Fork strategy. You can find all calls for proposals, the specific call topics, the deadlines and application forms on the Funding and Tenders portal.

    REA organises an annual Information Day to present the calls for proposals and to offer applicants information on how to prepare successful proposals. In addition, national authorities in EU Member States organise info sessions, in which REA and the European Commission take part.

    Check the Events section for upcoming EU Info Days and info sessions in EU countries. You can also find and watch recordings and presentations of previous Info Days there.

    You may apply as one or more partner organisations from the same or a different EU country, according to whether you apply under the SIMPLE or MULTI call for proposals.
  2. To apply, you must create a profile in the Funding & tenders portal.

    Select the call for proposal and topic you want to apply for and use the online forms to prepare and submit your proposal before the deadline.
  3. After the deadline, REA organises an evaluation with independent specialists in the field. These experts check and evaluate each proposal against defined criteria.

    Based on this evaluation, we inform applicants for MULTI programmes if their proposal has been chosen, and propose funding for successful applications.

    Applicants for SIMPLE programmes are informed by the national authorities in their respective EU country.

    The evaluation phase can last up to 6 months, and we inform applicants in late autumn.
  4. Once the successful proposals have been chosen, REA draws up a grant agreement with the project partners (‘the beneficiaries’) from the MULTI call for proposals. This grant agreement specifies the campaign’s promotional aims, duration and budget, the EU's contribution, rights and obligations and more. The parties usually sign the grant agreement within 3 months.

    For the SIMPLE call for proposals, the grant agreements are signed between the beneficiaries and the national authorities in their respective EU Member States.

Promotion programmes

The EU helps the agricultural products sector to finance information and promotion campaigns. The Promotion of Agricultural Products co-funds different types of promotion initiatives for EU agri-food products at home and abroad including campaigns that:

  • Promote organic products, EU sustainable agriculture, and the role of the agri-food sector regarding the environment and climate action.
  • Highlight the high safety standards of EU agri-food products.
  • Highlight the specific features of agricultural production methods in the European Union, as well as the diverse and traditional range of products supported by EU quality schemes.
  • Raise awareness of the authenticity of those European food types protected by origin, geographical area and traditional specialities

These campaigns can include:

  • Advertising campaigns in the press, on television, radio or on the internet
  • Sales promotions
  • Public relations campaigns
  • Participation in exhibitions and fairs.

There are two types of promotion programmes:

  • SIMPLE programmes fund one or more proposing organisations from the same EU country.
  • MULTI programmes fund at least two proposing organisations from at least two EU countries OR by one or more EU-level organisations.

Please consult the call topic page on the Funding and tenders portal for a full explanation of the types of activity that can be funded and the conditions for applying. 

Common mistakes

Here are some common mistakes that you should avoid when preparing your proposal.

Proposing organisation is not eligible

Ineligible proposing organisations cannot submit a proposal even as a member of a consortium with other eligible proposing organisations. For example, usually private companies cannot participate as co-applicants.

Proposing organisation is not representative of the product/sector promoted

If the proposing organisation is not representative of the product or sector promoted, i.e. does not fulfil the conditions set in Article 1(1) and 1(2) of Regulation 2015/1829, it cannot submit an application. It can, however, submit it in consortium with other partner organisations from the same sector and EU country if such a consortium as a whole fulfils those conditions.

Products/schemes promoted are not eligible

Article 5 of Regulation 1144/2014 defines the eligible products and schemes as well as other conditions, which need to be fulfilled for the proposal to be considered as eligible. For example, within a SIMPLE programme, wine can only be promoted in combination with other eligible products.

Proposal is out of scope of the call for proposals and/or topic

You should carefully check the scope of the call and topic to which you are applying. For example, the topic description indicates if the promotional programme can target the EU internal market and/or non-EU countries and if all products/schemes fall within the scope of the given topic.

Promotional programme is not of significant scale

Promotional programmes should be of significant scale in terms of their foreseen measurable cross-border impact. For SIMPLE programmes, this also means that they have to be implemented in an EU country other than the EU country of the proposing organisations (exceptions to this rule apply to promotion of European Union quality schemes and proper dietary practices – see Article 3(1)(b) of Regulation 2015/1829).

Promotional programme objectives are not well defined

Programme objectives shall be clearly defined and based on a market analysis. This facilitates the definition of the programme’s strategy. The objectives shall be set within a SMART framework. A set of indicators allowing the follow up of attainment of the objectives shall also be identified.

Activities and deliverables are not well defined

Good programme proposals provide a detailed description of activities to be implemented as well as of deliverables (i.e. outputs of the campaign). This allows the evaluation of their coherence with the programme strategy and objectives, as well as the cost effectiveness of the programme. Instructions available in the guide for applicants will help you with a list of essential questions that need to be addressed by your proposal.

European Union message is lacking

A promotional programme should have an EU dimension, both in terms of content and impact. One aspect of the EU dimension is the presence of a main EU message. Messages should not only focus on the product promoted, but also on European production standards, the quality and safety of European food products, European dietary practices and culture, European Union quality logos, etc.

Organisation and risk management are not described

The programme organisation and risk management are evaluated under the award criterion “management quality” to assess if the applicants are well prepared for programme implementation. They are evaluated on the basis of the information provided in the proposal, regardless of the notoriety, size or experience of the proposing organisation.

Evaluation methodology is absent

The programme proposal shall indicate how the impact of the campaign will be evaluated. It should thus present how the chosen evaluation methods will be applied in line with the objectives and indicators defined in the proposal.

Am I eligible?

Unsure if your project is eligible? Go to Who can apply or use the eligibility check tool (archived page).