• Niagara New Vintage Tailgate Party

    Niagara New Vintage Tailgate Party
    June 20, 2015
    Celebration of summer. Over 40 Niagara wineries will uncork their seasonal best alongside top local chefs preparing farm-to-table favourites in the Grape King Kevin Buis' own vineyard.  More information coming soon.


  • Workplace Safety and Prevention Workshops

    Workplace Safety and Prevention Workshops

    Niagara: Monday, April 27, 2015
    Prince Edward County: Monday, May 4, 2015
    Kingsville: Wednesday, May 6, 2015

    Registration Required at 905 688-0990 or info@grapegrowersofontario.com


  • Grape Grower of the Year 2014-2015

    Kevin Buis
    Glenlake Vineyards
    On behalf of the Grape Growers of Ontario we congratulate Kevin Buis on being chosen Grape King for the year 2014-2015.


  • Grape Growers of Ontario Welcome You to WineONtour.ca

    Map your route to Ontario wineries with Grape Growers of Ontario's wineONtour.ca.  Customize your tour by winery name, location, wine style or varietal.


Join the Greenbelt Review Discussion

March 20, 2015 | Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation

For 10 years now, Ontario’s Greenbelt has provided the solution for clean water, healthy local food, and a thriving economy with good jobs. At almost 2 million acres, it’s the world’s largest permanently protected greenbelt, and you can help make sure it stays that way.

From March 25th to April 28th, the province of Ontario is conducting a Coordinated Review of the Greenbelt Plan, Niagara Escarpment Plan, Oak Ridges Moraine Plan, and the Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe. For further background information about the Review, the advisory panel, and procedures, click here.

Coordinated Land Use Planning Review
Share Your Feedback
You can also submit your comments and ideas through

  • e-mail to landuseplanningreview@ontario.ca
  • the Ontario Environmental Registry at www.ontario.ca/ebr (Registry #012-3256)
  • mail to
    Land Use Planning Review
    Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing
    Ontario Growth Secretariat
    777 Bay Street, Suite 425 (4th floor)
    Toronto, ON M5G 2E5

China Trade Mission Secures New Opportunity for Ontario Businesses

Increased Exports for Province’s Agri-Food Sector


Ontario's 2015 Agri-Food Trade Mission to China has resulted in increased exports for Ontario products in China and new investment opportunities for Ontario agri-food companies.

Ministers Jeff Leal and Michael Chan recently concluded the province's first ever Minister-led agricultural trade mission, accompanied by 20 Ontario businesses and organizations. Over the course of the mission, the ministers and delegates promoted trade opportunities in Ontario to over 300 Chinese agri-food companies and government officials who participated in seminars, roundtables and individual meetings.

Growing Forward 2 for Producers Update

Growing Forward 2 (GF2) is a five-year federal-provincial-territorial initiative designed to encourage innovation, competitiveness and market development in Canada's agri-food and agri-products sector through cost share funding opportunities.

For Ontario producers, application for funding is made through the Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association (OSCIA).   1-800-265-9751

As GF2 enters its third year beginning April 1, 2015, updates have been made to the program including:

  • All GF2 funding opportunities are now merit-based, under a single Program
  • Cost-share caps per project have been introduced for each eligible Project Category
  • To be eligible, cost-share funding will only apply to invoices dated after a letter approving a funding allocation has been issued by OSCIA.

There are three application intake dates for Producers in 2015:
May 1, 2015 to May 21, 2015
August 10, 2015 to August 27, 2015
November 16, 2015 to December 3, 2015

Final project completion dates for the program:
GF2 projects must be completed by December 12, 2017 with all claims (including all required paid invoices and proofs of payment) submitted by January 31, 2018.

GF2 Producer Program Guide
Reference Guide - OSCIA Workshops

Provincial Budget 2015

Ontario Finance Minister Charles Sousa tabled the 2015 Ontario Budget on April 23, 2015.

Highlights include:

  • Reforming beer sales
  • Consultation with wine and spirits stakeholders on reforms to their sectors
  • Sale of LCBO's head office lands
  • Creating the Ontario Retirement Pension Plan
  • Cap-and-trade system as a carbon pricing mechanism

    Ontario Budget Highlights
    Ontario Budget 2015


April 23, 2015 | Jim Willwerth, PhD, Senior Scientist in Viticulture, Brock University | CCOVI

The following is a message on recent bud cold hardiness.  Following the warmer weather, our latest cold hardiness testing indicates that vines have lost cold tolerance and that sensitive varieties may experience freeze damage if temperatures drop below -4C. 

 THE LATEST COLD HARDINESS DATA can be viewed at http://www.ccovi.ca/vine-alert/recent

 Please refer to the following table for critical lethal temperatures and growth stages as vines continue to deacclimate and approach bud break over the next few weeks. 


Growth stage

Critical temperatures

Suggested Temperatures for start-up of wind machines

Dormant bud

Minus  4  C (as of April 23, 2015)

Minus 1 to Minus 2 C

Dormant swollen bud

Minus 3 C

Minus 1  to 0 C

Bud Burst

Minus 2.2 C

0 C to Plus 1 C

One leaf unfolded

Minus 1.5 C

Plus 1 C to Plus 2 C

Two or more leaves unfolded

Minus 1 to 0 C 

Plus 1 C to Plus 2 C

 For optimal use of wind machines, it is suggested that the start-up temperatures be set at 2 to 3 degrees warmer than temperatures at which injury might occur.  It is also important to monitor wind speeds along with temperatures.

 Please note:  Cold hardiness ratings are estimates only and the information provided is for general guidance.  Cold hardiness ratings are site specific and may vary based on vine health, viticulture practices and site conditions, among other factors.  Any decisions for protection strategies should be based on your own information and site conditions.


100% Canadian Award Winning Cheese

April 22, 2015

What could be better than 100% Canadian Cheese and 100% Ontario VQA Wine?

Now in its 9th edition, the Canadian Cheese Grand Prix honours Canadian cheese makers, giving them the opportunity to showcase the expertise and passion they invest in their craft.

Dairy Farmers of Canada sponsors a nationwide competition to honour all categories of Canadian cheeses made from 100% Canadian cow’s milk and certified as such.

The Grand Champion and 27 category winners were selected from a record 268 cheese entries submitted by cheese makers from Prince Edward Island to British Columbia..

Sponsored and hosted every two years by Dairy Farmers of Canada, the Canadian Cheese Grand Prix celebrates the high quality, versatility and great taste of Canadian cheese made from 100% Canadian milk.

Here are the 2015 Canadian Cheese Grand Prix Champions

Vote For Your Favourite Label Design

                           YOU BE THE JUDGE!


Be part of the judging process of the Best Label Design within the Ontario wine industry. Out of hundreds of entries submitted as part of the 2015 Ontario Wine Awards, the selection was narrowed down to only 12. Winners will be announced after the Gala Celebration, which is being held at Queen's Landing in Niagara-on-the-Lake on May 8.

As a thank you for casting your vote, you will be entered into a contest for a chance to win two tickets to the exclusive Ontario Wine Awards Winery Tour & Lunch, hosted by Tony Aspler, in the fall of 2015.

The more votes the better! Only one vote permitted per person/computer.
*Odds of winning will be determined by the number of eligible entries received by midnight EST on April 28, 2015

Federal Budget 2015

Federal Minister of Finance Joe Oliver tabled the Economic Action Plan 2015 on April 21, 2015.

Highlights include proposals to:

  • Increase the lifetime Capital Gains Exemption to $1 million for qualified farm property
  • Reduce small business tax rate from 11% to 9% by 2019
  • Increase the Tax-Free Savings Account annual contribution limit to $10,000, effective for the 2015 taxation year
  • Reduce Employment Insurance premiums in 2017
  • Invest $18.1 million over two years, starting in 2016-17, to promote trade opportunities for the agriculture and agri-food sector
  • Provide an additional $12 million over two years, starting in 2016-17 to market Canadian agricultural and agri-food products around the world

Budget in Brief
Budget Plan 2015

Cap and trade system can work for farmers

By Don McCabe, President, Ontario Federation of Agriculture

The Ontario government believes climate change is one of the greatest challenges facing future generations. This past week Premier Wynne announced Ontario will pursue the establishment of a cap and trade system to address climate change by limiting sources of greenhouse gas emissions in Ontario. 

Beer to be sold in up to 450 supermarkets

The Toronto Star, April 16, 2015

Premier Kathleen Wynne is playing Santa Claus for Ontario beer drinkers with the sale of six-packs in Ontario supermarkets beginning this Christmas.

Beer will eventually be sold in 450 of the province’s 1,500 grocery stores — everywhere from Loblaws to smaller independent markets — with Ontarians continuing to enjoy Canada’s lowest average prices.

“It’s a good day for our economy and for job creation. It is also a good day for the people who like their beer cold because it will be easier to buy it,” the premier said Thursday.

The most sweeping reform of beer sales in Ontario history follows an investigation by the Star’s Martin Regg Cohn and comes 30 years after former premier David Peterson first promised such liberalization.