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    Winemakers Reject Québec Icewine Standard / Les vignerons rejettent la norme québécoise en matière de vin de glace

Winemakers Reject Québec Icewine Standard / Les vignerons rejettent la norme québécoise en matière de vin de glace

Français ci-dessous – The Canadian Vintners Association (CVA), representing over 90% of all wine produced in Canada and almost 100% of Canada’s genuine Icewine production, and Vignerons Indépendants du Québec (VIQ) are deeply disappointed in the Québec government’s new Icewine certification system for “Vin de Glace du Québec”.   The recently announced Québec standard effectively lowers the bar for the production of Icewine in Québec and fails to meet Canadian and internationally accepted Icewine production practices.

Canada is the global leader in the production, sale and export of Icewine, producing 90% of the world’s authentic Icewine.  To help combat counterfeit products, as well as meet international trade obligations, the Government of Canada passed Icewine Regulation (SOR/2014-10) in February 2014.  A key requirement of the federal standard is that Icewine is made exclusively from “grapes naturally frozen on the vine”.  This is a fundamental in Icewine production, upheld by wine-producing countries around the world and supported by the International Organization of Wine and Vine (OIV).

“Industry celebrated the passing of the federal Icewine standard last year,” stated Dan Paszkowski, CVA President and CEO.  “It is shocking that the Québec government and its accrediting body, Conseil des appellations réservées et des termes valorisants (CARTV), is permitting the harvesting of grapes before they are naturally frozen on the vine, falling short of the federal standard and all international standards for Icewine.  This risks the reputation of authentic and globally respected Icewine producers from coast to coast.”

In Canada, provincial governments have the responsibility for on-farm production.  Unfortunately, the Québec government is allowing grapes to be harvested before the grapes are naturally frozen on the vine.  The harvested grapes are then placed in outdoor nets, hanging for weeks or months, until the temperature drops […]

2014 Canadian Wine Industry Awards


The Canadian Vintners Association (CVA) is pleased to announce the results of the inaugural Canadian Wine Industry Awards.  These prestigious awards recognize individuals, organizations and businesses that have gone above and beyond to support and enhance the wine industry in Canada, celebrating the success, leadership and outstanding commitment in Canada’s grape wine industry.

“It is a great honour to recognize George and Trudy Heiss of Gray Monk Estates, British Columbia’s oldest family owned and operated winery, with the Award of Distinction” said Tony Stewart, CVA Chair and President of Quails’ Gate Winery. “The Heiss’ are trail blazers and can be credited with bringing many high quality vinifera vines to Canada, as well as helping to establish the Vintners Quality Alliance (VQA).”

The Award of Distinction is the preeminent award for the Canadian wine industry and regarded as the highest form of peer recognition and appreciation of outstanding leadership, commitment and passion for the advancement of the Canadian wine industry.

The Wine Industry Champion Award was presented to Dean Allison, federal Member of Parliament for the Niagara West-Glanbrook riding in Ontario, recognizing Mr. Allison’s exemplary support for the Canadian wine industry and contributions to the overall strength and long-term viability of the industry.

“As the champion of the excise duty exemption on 100% Canadian wine in 2006, Mr. Allison has strengthened every single Canadian winery,” remarked Stewart.  “Over the last decade, Mr. Allison has supported the Canadian wine industry through fostering stronger federal relationships and endorsing key legislation, including the most recent federal Icewine definition.”

The awards were presented on July 8, 2014, in concert with the BC Wine Institute’s Wine Industry Recognition Award, which recognized CedarCreek Estate Winery founder, Senator Ross Fitzpatrick. The event was held in Kelowna, […]

Launch of First National Online Directory of Canada’s Wineries/Lancement du premier Annuaire national des vignerons canadiens

Français ci-dessous – At their annual general meeting today, the Canadian Vintners Association (CVA) announced the Wine411 joint project with BlackSquare Inc. to produce the first independent, national online directory of Canada’s nearly 800 wineries.

When completed in late 2014, Wine411 will deliver the first comprehensive, accurate and independent online directory of Canada’s wineries, cideries and meaderies, from coast to coast.

Wine411’s user-friendly directory will be a resource for wineries, travellers and anyone interested in Canadian wineries and wine regions. The online directory will be updated annually, providing comprehensive information on winery contact information, production volumes, varietals, awards received and winemakers, as well as consumer-friendly data on visitor facilities, websites, wine clubs and unique features. Wine411’s print-friendly design will further allow users to print all or part of the directory.

Wine411 was conceived and funded jointly by Canadian Vintners Association and BlackSquare Inc., who are committed to a multi-year evolution of the project.

“We are pleased to work closely with BlackSquare Inc. on developing Wine411″ said Tony Stewart, CVA Chair and President of Quails’ Gate Winery.  “Wine411 will help raise the profile of our vibrant Canadian wine industry.  I expect this directory to become a go-to resource for a broad range of users.”

“Wine411 was an easy decision for BlackSquare. We work with wineries globally and know that every important wine-producing country enjoys some form of national winery directory,” said BlackSquare’s CEO Matthew Protti.

“Canada currently has none, so we decided to apply our industry and technology expertise to meet that need.  Happily, the CVA independently recognized the need for a national directory, so we joined forces.”

Wine411 information is being gathered by personal telephone interviews with all wineries, at no cost to them, to ensure authenticity and […]

Wine Industry Calls on Provinces to Open Borders to Direct Wine Delivery

OTTAWA, ON – June 27, 2013 – Tomorrow, June 28th, 2013, marks the one-year anniversary of the passage of Bill C-311.  This momentous bill, sponsored by Dan Albas, Member of Parliament (Okanagan-Coquihalla), effectively amended the prohibition-era Importation of Intoxicating Liquors Act, removing the federal restrictions prohibiting individuals from transporting wine from across provincial borders when purchased for personal use.

One year later, only two provinces – British Columbia and Manitoba – have permitted for the direct shipment of wine from a licensed Canadian winery to residents, while the remaining provinces and territories continue to object to the national legislation.  Thus, despite Bill C-311’s unanimous federal support, the majority of Canadian wine consumers are still prohibited from purchasing directly from out-of-province wineries.

“The Canadian wine industry applauds the federal government for removing an 84 year old law which had restricted the opportunities for Canada’s growing wine industry to satisfy consumer demand for direct sales and delivery,” said Dan Paszkowski, President and CEO of the Canadian Vintners Association (CVA).

“There are now over 500 wineries in Canada, and with each vintage, more wines are produced than can be stocked or sold by liquor stores; however, that shouldn’t prevent an adult from purchasing Canadian wine directly from an out-of-province winery,” stated Paszkowski.  “Consumers expect to be able to purchase the wines they want, in the manner of their choosing: from liquor stores, at the winery, through winery wine clubs, or online.  Direct-to-consumer delivery would satisfy consumer demand, help local wineries grow their business, and augment liquor store sales.  It is also good for rural communities and the entire Canadian economy.”

A recent study calculated the annual economic impact of the Canadian wine industry to be $6.8 billion, supporting over 31,000 jobs […]

Want to buy wine from another province? Why the rules are (still) confusing

Globe and Mail (Feb. 28, 2013): It has been eight months since Ottawa decriminalized direct-to-consumer wine sales across provincial lines. That enlightened amendment to an outdated law, unanimously approved in the House of Commons, was designed to free up access to small-lot Canadian wines, many of which are not carried in liquor stores across the country. But this is Canada, where it takes more than an act of Parliament or the will of the people to break the shackles of almighty liquor boards.

Read the full story here

Canadian Wine and Grape Industry Contributes $6.8 Billion

Canadian Wine and Grape Industry Contributes $6.8 Billion in Economic Impact to Canadian Economy

Most comprehensive examination ever conducted in Canadian wine industry history

Ottawa, Ontario – The findings of the largest research study ever conducted on the Canadian wine and grape industry reveal a prosperous and expanding $6.8 billion dollar industry.

Commissioned by the Canadian Vintners Association, the Winery & Grower Alliance of Ontario, the British Columbia Wine Institute and the Winery Association of Nova Scotia, the report titled Canada’s Wine Economy – Ripe Robust Remarkable confirms the wine industry has become a large and significant contributor to the overall Canadian economy, especially in Ontario, British Columbia, Quebec and Nova Scotia.

“The research findings reinforce the significant economic value the Canadian wine industry brings to the national economy,” said Dan Paszkowski, President, Canadian Vintners Association. “The impacts are both direct and indirect, from job creation and tourism to tax generation and agricultural growth, the wine industry benefits multiple business sectors across the entire Canadian economy,” he added.

Key Findings:

  • Canadian wine industry production has an annual national economic impact of $6.8 billion. Specifically, for every bottle of wine produced in Canada there is $31 of domestic economic impact generated in the country.
  • The wine and grape industry is responsible for more than 31,000 jobs in Canada from manufacturing, agriculture, tourism, transportation, research, restaurants and retail.
  • Wine-related tourism welcomes more than 3 million visitors each year, generating more than $1.2 billion annually in tourism revenue and employment.
  • The wine industry generates $1.2 billion in federal and provincial tax revenue and liquor board mark up.
  • Canadians enjoy over 1 billion glasses or 220 million bottles of wine produced by the Canadian wine industry each year.

Canadian winemakers support a broad network of related industries in urban […]