• 2017 Celebrity Luncheon with Colonel Chris Hadfield

    Please join the Grape Growers of Ontario and Colonel Chris Hadfield as we celebrate our 70th Anniversary and 'growing into the future' at Club Roma, 125 Vansickle Road in St. Catharines, on Wednesday, September 13th at 11:30 a.m. for a wine reception, followed by lunch at 12:00 p.m.
    Click here for ticket order forms




  • GGO 70th Anniversary Family Picnic

    All Ontario grape growers are invited to celebrate the GGO's 70th Anniversary at a family picnic on
    Invitations with RSVP details will be mailed in the coming weeks. For more information, contact 905-688-0990 ext 224 or info@grapegrowersofontario.com


  • 2016-2017 Grape King

    Jamie Quai
    Co-Proprietor, Vigneron and Winemaker, Quai Du Vin Estate Winery

    The Quai family is in its third generation of grape growing in Elgin County. Jamie Quai has been selected as 2016 Grape King to serve as ambassador for Ontario's grape growers. 


  • Grape Growers 70th Anniversary Sign Contest

    Challenging all Ontario grape growers!

    Help celebrate the 70th Anniversary of the Grape Growers of Ontario by beautifying your farm gate sign.

    Click here for contest details and sign application form.


Letter from the Honourable Jeff Leal to the Grape Growers of Ontario membership


On March 28, 2017, the Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs provided the Grape Growers of Ontario with a letter supporting regulated marketing in Ontario. The following is an excerpt of the letter, and the full letter can be read here.

"These actions do not impact any other marketing boards regulated under the Farm Products Marketing Act. As I have stated on numerous occasions, our government has not wavered from its commitment to maintain regulated marketing in Ontario. This includes the ability of marketing boards to negotiate collectively on behalf of their members where such a requirement is included in the powers delegated to that board, as is the case for the Grape Growers of Ontario."  Minister Jeff Leal, Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs

Colonel Chris Hadfield to celebrate the Grape Growers of Ontario’s 70th Anniversary at the 2017 Celebrity Luncheon

St. Catharines, ON (June 22, 2017): The first and only Canadian to ever command the International Space Station is scheduled to bring the marvels of science and space travel to guests as the Grape Growers of Ontario ‘grow into the future’ at the 2017 Celebrity Luncheon.

The Grape Growers of Ontario in partnership with Meridian, Ontario’s largest credit union, Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation, and the Niagara Grape and Wine Festival, are thrilled to welcome Colonel Chris Hadfield to Niagara to celebrate the GGO’s 70th Anniversary and Canada’s 150th birthday which kicks off the 66th Annual Niagara Grape and Wine Festival.

“Our history as grape growers is woven into the fabric of Canada’s 150 years, and what better way to ‘grow into the future’ than with the man who tweeted from space for five months aboard the International Space Station,” says Matthias Oppenlaender, Chair, Grape Growers of Ontario. 

AgriInvest Program – Use It or Risk Losing It!

June 21, 2017 - Canadian Horticultural Council

The purpose of the AgriInvest Program is to provide farmers with the first level of support for downward fluctuations in income. Under Growing Forward 2, the AgriInvest Program matching contribution rates were reduced from 1.5% and a maximum annual contribution of $22,500 to 1% with a maximum annual contribution of $15,000.
The government has noted that there is approximately $2.1 billion in farmers' accounts and questions the need to increase the level of support when growers are not accessing the full amounts available to them. By not maximizing the funds in their accounts, farmers are insufficiently demonstrating the need for the program and are at risk of losing the program entirely. This was the case with the old Net Income Stabilization Account (NISA) Program. Because farmers had accumulated $3 billion in their accounts, the government questioned the need for the NISA Program and subsequently discontinued it.  
CHC strongly encourages all Canadian farmers to fully use the funds in their AgriInvest accounts. This will send a strong message to government about the importance of the program, and the importance of restoring matching contribution rates to previous levels. 

Boosting Competitiveness and Innovation for Ontario's VQA Wineries

June 20, 2017 - Province Supporting Growth and Job Creation in Ontario Wine Industry

Ontario is helping the province's wineries and grape growers enhance their productivity and competitiveness through increasing supports for activities like marketing, business scaling and innovation.

Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs Jeff Leal was at Sandbanks Estate Winery today to kick off Ontario Wine Week and announce updates to Ontario's Wine and Grape Strategy. These changes will better support Ontario's wine and grape producers so that they can continue to grow, create jobs and meet increasing consumer demand for world-class Ontario Vintners Quality Alliance (VQA) wines.

Wayne Gretzky Grand Opening

The Grape Growers of Ontario congratulate Wayne Gretzky and Peller Estates on the Grand Opening of Wayne Gretzky Estates Winery & Distillery on June 7, 2017 in Niagara on the Lake.

Pictured (L to R): John Peller, Debbie Zimmerman, Wayne Gretzky, Matthias Oppenlaender

Canada's Sesquicentennial - GGO Feature

The Grape Growers of Ontario are honoured to be featured in the June 2017 Business Link Niagara's Canada's Sesquicentennial Collectors Edition in celebration of our 70th Anniversary.

Click here to view the GGO's 70th Anniversary Feature.

2017 Ontario Wine Awards


The Grape Growers of Ontario congratulate all winners of the 2017 Ontario Wine Awards, held May 31 at Niagara College's Benchmark Restaurant.

Special congratulations to the winners of the Grape Growers of Ontario sponsored 'Red Wine of the Year' award, Chateau des Charmes 2012 Equuleus, and 'White Wine of the Year' award, Tawse 2015 Quarry Road Riesling. 
Shiraz Mottiar of Malivoire Wine was named 'Winemaker of the Year', and James Chatto received the 'Wine Journalism' award.

Click here to read the full press release and full list of 2017 results.

VQA Ontario — News & Tips — June 2017

In this issue:

  • 2016 Ontario Wine Industry Performance Study Now Available
  • LCBO Strike Contingency
  • If You Export To Asia
  • Save The Date – VQA Annual General Meeting July 26 In Lake Erie North Shore
  • Tips Of The Month

OFVGA raises alarm about minimum wage increases

May 30, 2017 - Ontario Fruit & Vegetable Growers' Association

Today's announcement made by Kathleen Wynne, Ontario's premier, that the miniumum wage will rise to $14/hour as of January 1, 2018 and then $15/hour as of January 1, 2019 has negative consequences for the province's $1.5 billion horticultural industry.

"Sixty percent of growers' costs is attributed to labour," says Jay VanderHout, Chair of the Ontario Fruit & Vegetable Growers' Association (OFVGA). "Our horticultural industry has no way of mitigating the impact. This announcement comes on the heels of cap-and-trade which further limits our competiveness in North American markets. This policy development threatens the existence of many farms and foretells of closures to come."

Save the Date: Triggs International Premium Vinifera Lecture Series at CCOVI

Brock University's Cool Climate Oenology and Viticulture Institute (CCOVI) is pleased to announce the 10th anniversary installment of the Triggs International Premium Vinifera Lecture Series. The lecture series presents a leading international viticultural speaker to lend their expertise through vineyard visits and a public letcure on key issues related to premiun vinifera grape production.

Click here for more information.