Raising awareness of wine unfairness
Wine producers in Prince Edward County are opening a wine store for a day to draw attention to restrictive provincial liquor laws that they say are unfair to their burgeoning industry.
Visitors to the “store” will be able to sample some of Ontario best wines and ciders grown right here in Prince Edward County – free of charge. However, consumers will not be able to purchase any wines because Ontario laws prohibit the sale of wines outside of the LCBO or retail outlets at wineries. Unfortunately, the LCBO does not carry wines from most smaller Ontario wineries because of their low volumes of production.
“We have fabulous wines grown right here in this area and yet we can’t sell them through our provincial liquor store network because we’re too small,” says Angela Braun of the Prince Edward County Wine Growers Association. “We want to draw attention to this issue, which is why we’re holding the one day store event.”
Also of concern to the Prince Edward wine growers is the fact that many Ontario wines for sale in the LCBO are produced with a majority of foreign juice, mostly from Chile, yet sold as “cellared in Ontario”. Most consumers are not aware of this – and yet smaller local wines are 100% made in Ontario. Braun believes this is an important distinction that consumers need to know, especially given the current trends towards promoting locally produced food and drink.
The event will be held on Sunday, October 30 from 12:00 – 4:30 pm in Bloomfield. For more information, contact the Prince Edward County Winegrowers Association at 613-921-7100.