Ontario VQA Wines Available at More Than 100 Farmers' Markets
Mobile Map Helps Connect Consumers with the Province’s Wine, Local Foods
The province is making it easier to find Ontario-made Vintners Quality Alliance (VQA) wines at more than 100 farmers' markets thanks to a new mobile map.
Use the map -- at a computer or on a mobile device -- to quickly find your favourite VQA wines, get directions, and hours of operation for participating local farmers' markets across Ontario.
In May 2014, the province launched the VQA Wines at Farmers' Market program, allowing the sale of VQA wines at farmers' markets. The two-year pilot -- which now includes 67 wineries -- is part of the province's local food strategy to increase demand for the good things that are grown, made and harvested in Ontario, and the wine and grape strategy to promote the province's wine industry.
Supporting a successful agri-food sector is part of the Ontario government's economic plan to invest in people, build modern infrastructure and support a dynamic and innovative business climate.
- Since May 1, 2014, the estimated sales of VQA wine at farmers’ markets total more than a quarter of a million dollars.
- VQA wines are made entirely from Ontario grown grapes and must adhere to rigorous winemaking standards.
- VQA wine sales in Ontario have increased by $100 million since 2008 — from $170 million in 2008 to $273 million in 2013-14.
- According to an industry study, Ontario’s wine and grape industry contributed $3.3 billion to the province’s economy in 2011.
- Launched in 2009, the Wine and Grape strategy has helped create 2,000 direct jobs.
- The province has implemented this initiative through the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario to ensure that wine sales are conducted in a socially responsible manner.
“The pilot has been a great opportunity to raise the profile of Ontario’s excellent wines and wineries and to connect consumers with local markets and local products. I invite Ontarians to check out our mobile map, visit the markets and buy world-class VQA wines that are crafted entirely from Ontario-grown grapes.”
“Selling our VQA wines at farmers’ markets side-by-side with other growers’ produce is a unique and extraordinary opportunity for wine makers. It allows us another avenue to share our products with consumers, and where consumers are.”