RICHMOND, BRITISH COLUMBIA — (Marketwire) — 11/15/12 — Canadian vintners will uncork new international market opportunities with the support of the Harper Government. Kerry-Lynne Findlay, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice and Member of Parliament (Delta East-Richmond), on behalf of Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz, today announced an investment to help Canada’s wine producers increase exports in key markets.
“Our Government’s top priority remains the economy, and Canada’s agriculture and agri-food industry plays an important role in creating jobs and keeping our economy strong,” said MP Findlay. “This investment will help Canadian wine producers continue to deliver premium, high-quality wines to consumers abroad, putting money in the pockets of Canada’s hard-working winemakers.”
This investment of $160,000 will support the Canadian Vintners Association’s ongoing international market development and trade efforts to increase the awareness of the value, quality, and diversity of Canadian wines.
“AgriMarketing Program funding has been instrumental in helping Canadian wineries gain access to new markets,” explains Dan Paszkowski, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Vintners Association. “Canada is known for its authentic Icewine, and AgriMarketing funding is helping the industry build on its Icewine reputation and raise awareness of the world-class sparkling and table wines coming out of Canada’s diverse wine regions.”
Canada’s top-quality grapes and excellent growing conditions make increased export opportunities ripe for the picking. In 2011, Canadian exports of wine exceeded $36 million, with more than 21.6 million litres of wine going to international markets. The U.S. has developed quite a taste for Canadian wines, importing 20.2 million litres in 2011.
Through the AgriMarketing Program under Growing Forward, the Harper Government is investing $88 million to help industry implement long-term international strategies, including international market development, industry-to-industry trade advocacy, and consumer awareness and branding activities.
The Harper Government has identified market development as a priority under Growing Forward 2, and this announcement is another example of what is being done to enhance competitiveness and drive innovation and long-term growth in Canadian agriculture.