• Celebrity Luncheon 2016



  • Localgrapes.ca

    Meet the Folks Behind the Grapes

    Our local grape growers pursue the fruits

    of their labour in an entirely literal fashion


  • Marketing and Vineyard Improvement Program (MVIP)

    MVIP provides Ontario's grape growers with 35% cost-share funding to help with the cost of improvements to their production of wine grapes. The 2015 intake opened May 19, 2015 and is now closed. Due to a strong demand for the available funds, the joint Government-Industry Steering Committee has decided that the program will not open a second intake for year 2.


  • 2015-16 Grape King

    Jamie Slingerland
    Director of Viticulture, Pillitteri Estate Winery

    The Slingerland family have been farming in Niagara-on-the-Lake since 1783. Jamie has been selected as 2015 Grape King to serve as ambassador for Ontario's grape growers. 


We grow the wines you love in summer

Summer is like a glass of chilled Chardonnay: bright, vivid and joyous.
Summer is when the air is buzzing and the sun shining.
Summer is when green grapes emerge from grapevine flowers, slowly take on their darker shade, and develop bright flavours.
Summer is when we spend our days nurturing the most flavourful grapes that will transform into the wines you love.
This Summer, enjoy fine days in the sun with a crisp glass of local, VQA wine.

Discover our Ontario VQA wines, food pairings, getaway ideas and more!

Grape Growers of Ontario Reveal 2016 Celebrity Luncheon Speaker

Who will be the featured Canadian personality at the Grape Growers of Ontario's 2016 Annual Celebrity Luncheon? You won't want to miss this event. Make sure to clear your calendar and purchase your tickets now!

Click here for the media release

Date & Time: Wednesday, September 14, 2016 at 11:30 AM
Location: Club Roma, 125 Vansickle Road, St Catharines

Tickets:  Click here for order form, or call the GGO office at 905 688-0990



2016 Bi-Annual Grape Research Tailgate Tour

The 2016 Bi-Annual Grape Research Tailgate Tour is being held on August 24, 2016 from 9:00 am - 2:00 pm and includes stops at Lambert Farm and Lawrie Farm in NOTL, Cave Spring Vineyards in Beamsville and Henry of Pelham Winery in St. Catharines. Please click here for full details. RSVP by August 19 to carolyn.prieur@ontario.ca or 905-562-1631.

CleanFARMS Obsolete Pesticides Collection Campaign

In September, CleanFARMS will be operating collection programs for obsolete or unwanted agricultural pesticides.  This program offers farmers an environmentally responsible way to dispose of old or unwanted product. It is offered in each province at least once every three years. Farmers drop off their obsolete materials at a designated collection site at no charge. The products are then transported to a high temperature incineration facility where they are safely disposed of.

Click here for specific dates and locations near you.  Collection sites will only be accepting target products from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm at each location on the date indicated. For more information, please call CleanFarms at 877-622-4460 or visit www.cleanfarms.ca.

Lydia Tomek joins Burning Kiln Winery

August 15, 2016 | Burning Kiln

Burning Kiln Winery names Lydia Tomek to Head Winemaker of the award-winning St. Williams based winery known for appassimento style wines.  Tomek joins the Burning Kiln team of Winemaker Patti Fixter and Frank DeLeebeeck, Vineyard Manager. She hs been Head Winemaker at Hernder Estate Winery for the past ten years and has held winemaking positions at Hillebrand Winery and Jackson-Triggs.

"It is an incredible feeling of honour to start my new wine adventure with Burning Kiln Winery. Being able to intimately work with grapes grown on Burning Kiln's rich soils and unique landscape, along with utilizing tobacco kilns in parts of the winemaking process, is an exciting opportunity not only for myself but also for the Ontario South Coast. I look forward to working with so many incredible people to help build the Ontario South Coast as one of Canada's great wine regions," says Lydia Tomak.

Burning Kiln invites the public to join in the "Winemaker Welcome and Wine Release Party" taking place on Saturday, September 10th from 6pm to 10pm at the winery. Tickets are $50 and include samples of Burning Kiln's newest releases as well as a beef tenderloin dinner by David's on Tour. Tickets will be available at the winery.

Ag minister comes to aid of vegetable growers

August 16, 2016 - The Sarnia Observer

Ontario’s agriculture minister has slammed the brakes on a proposal that would have stripped London-region vegetable farmers of their ability to bargain collectively with food processors.

In a move that drew praise from both farmers and opposition MPPs, Jeff Leal issued a directive Wednesday to the powerful Ontario Farm Products Marketing Commission that halts the commission from changing existing regulations for the vegetable processing industry, based largely in Southwestern Ontario.<?xml:namespace prefix = "o" />

“We want to make sure it is an open, transparent, co-operative, collaborative process going forward,” Leal said in an interview.

Leal ordered the commission refrain from making any regulatory changes until there has been a “fulsome public consultation and engagement process.”

Temporary Water Permits Available for Ontario Irrigators

August 16, 2016 - The Grower
By Bruce Kelly and Morgan Ellis, Farm & Food Care Ontario 

The extremely dry growing season has been hitting Ontario farmers hard, particularly in the Niagara region. The effects of the intense heat combined with little to no rain has resulted in the Ontario Tender Fruit Growers and the Ontario Fresh Grape Growers’ Marketing Board asking the government to streamline Permit to Take Water (PTTW) procedures.


Deadline Extended for Comments on Land Use Plans

August 10, 2016 | Government of Ontario

On May 10, 2016, Ontario released proposed changes to the Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, the Greenbelt Plan, the Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan and the Niagara Escarpment Plan.

Due to high interest in the review and in response to requests made by several municipalities and stakeholder organizations, the deadline is being extended for comments to be submitted on the four proposed revised plans.

The deadline to provide input on the four proposed revised plans has been extended to October 31, 2016.

The proposed changes were informed by the feedback received from Indigenous communities, the public, municipalities, stakeholders and the Advisory Panel appointed to provide recommendations on how to make the plans better.

Please visit the Co-ordinated Land Use Planning Review website at www.ontario.ca/landuseplanningreview to find “Shaping Land Use in the Greater Golden Horseshoe,” a guide to proposed changes to the land use plans, and the four proposed revised plans. Comments and feedback can also be submitted through the website. 

Reminder to all growers to use bird scaring devices responsibly

August 9, 2016 | Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs' publications

If you are using propane cannons, remember to operate them only when birds are feeding (dawn to dusk) which starts at about 30 minutes before sunrise, and ends about 30 minutes after sunset, since there is enough light for birds to forage. It is considered normal farm practice to operate between this period, but never operate propane-fired-bird-scaring cannons, or electronic bird scarers outside of this time period.  Other points to remember as you try to keep the birds at bay:

  • Start bird abatement measures before they get used to feeding in one place; it is harder to scare them away once they have established a feeding pattern. Start 10 days before the crop is attractive to them.
  • Vineyards near roosting areas, bush or ponds are at higher risk of bird damage so place more emphasis on disrupting feeding in those areas.
  • Random, unexpected noise is more effective than a predictable pattern.
  • Vary timing of sounds and vary placement of devices.
  • Find novel ways to disrupt bird feeding.
  • Use a combination of methods to scare birds; a variety of methods is far more effective at reducing bird damage than any single method alone.
  • Netting is extremely effective    

For more information:
Bird Control on Grape and Tender Fruit Farms
Using Propane-Fired Cannons to Keep Birds Away From Vineyards
Publication 360: Guide to Fruit Production: Bird Management  page 275


VQA Rack Card

VQA Ontario has introduced VQA rack cards to help share the VQA story, the value of our appellation system and your place in it.  Cards can be ordered through the VQAO office.  A print-ready file is available in the resources section of the VQAO website or  download pdf.

Other resources include:

VQA: Supporting 15 Years of Ontario Wine Industry Growth
Download Booklet (1,720KB)
Printer Friendly version