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More flexibility added to CEBA eligibility for farmers

October 27, 2020  By Fruit and Vegetable

The Government of Canada announced that businesses that have been operating out of a non-business banking account can now access the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) by opening a business account.

According the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC), this has been an important ask from farmers and will help ensure the financial strength of the thousands of small agricultural businesses across the country.

This follows the October 9 announcement of an intent to introduce major expansions to CEBA to increase the limit to $60,000, from $40,000, and double the non-repayable forgivable portion to $20,000, from $10,000. Those expanded amounts will be available soon.

Not counting the number of farmers who are now eligible because of the change announced today, AAFC estimates more than 85,000 farm businesses will have access to the interest-free loans of CEBA, which equates to up to $5.1 billion – one-third of which is forgivable.

“We strongly encourage farmers and food businesses who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic to take advantage of the generous terms offered by the CEBA loans,” a statement from AAFC read.


CEBA now has expanded eligibility to businesses using personal banking accounts. To be eligible, businesses must have been operating as a business as of Mar. 1, 2020, must successfully open a business account at a Canadian financial institution that is participating in CEBA, and meet the other existing CEBA eligibility criteria.

The extended deadline to apply for CEBA is Dec. 31, 2020. Further details on the additional financing will be announced soon.

To access this additional financing, businesses and non-profit organizations will be required to provide an attestation to the serious impact of COVID-19 on their operations.

CEBA is available at 200+ financial institutions (banks and credit unions).

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