• Season's Greetings

     Grape Growers of Ontario wish you
     and your family a very Happy Holiday Season

    For responsible hosting tips visit lcbo.ca



  • GGO meets with Premier Wynne

    Grape harvest is in full swing in Ontario, and the Grape Growers of Ontario welcomed the opportunity to meet with Premier Kathleen Wynne in the vineyards of grape grower Bill George in Beamsville.




  • GGO 70th Anniversary Family Picnic






    August 24, 2017 - Thank you to everyone who celebrated the GGO's 70th Anniversary!
    Photo: Denis Cahill


  • 2017-2018 Grape King

    Doug Whitty
    President, Whitty Farms and 13th Street Winery

    Doug Whitty is a third generation grape grower in St. Catharines and has been selected as the 2017 Grape King to serve as ambassador for Ontario's grape growers. 


CCOVI Consumer Research Lab

October 23, 2017 - thegrower.org

Brock University’s viticulture institute has received $960,00 for a one-of-a-kind consumer research lab.  The Canada Foundation for Innovation grant will help the Cool Climate Oenology and Viticulture Institute (CCOVI) establish the world’s first mediated-reality wine laboratory that will combine sights, smells and sounds to help researchers study the science of consumer choice in the wine industry.

The Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality and Sensory Reality Consumer Laboratory, to be known as (R3CL), will be able to create a variety of environments in which people purchase and consume wines. These environments could include wineries, liquor stores or even dining rooms. Interwoven with the scenes will be music, smells and other sensory information.

Vineland marks a decade of research

The latest Innovation Report from the Vineland Research and Innovation Centre is brimming with success  stories. Featured on the front cover is a new sweet potato variety that’s set to take root on a commercial scale in 2019.

Click here to view the report.

Prime Minister Trudeau presented with 100% grown in Ontario wine

October 23, 2017 - ST. CATHARINES, ON:

The Grape Growers of Ontario congratulate Potter Settlement Wines of Hastings County, Ontario on being invited to present their award-winning wines to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (pictured below with Potter Settlement Wines owner Sandor Johnson). Prime Minister Trudeau was presented with Potter Settlement’s 2016 Marquette and 2016 Frontenac.

“It is always a proud moment when a member of our industry is recognized for their hard work,” says Matthias Oppenlaender, Chair, Grape Growers of Ontario. “Potter Settlement Wines has succeeded with two grape varieties, Marquette and Frontenac, in a challenging location. Their ability to find alternative grape production options using sustainable methods is commendable.”

Spill Prevention Reminder from the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change

The Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) has asked the Grape Growers of Ontario to remind all members about the management of grape harvest waste.  In the past, the MOECC has been involved in incidents where grape waste was stored outside near creeks, ponds, stormwater catchbasins or ditches.  Runoff from grape waste resulting from harvest operations has the potential to spill into creeks, ponds, catchbasins or ditches and be discharged off-site.  This run-off can appear as a black odorous material high in organic matter which in a watercourse can consume aquatic life sustaining oxygen, and impair the quality of water for fish and other aquatic organisms.

During this busy harvest season, it is important to keep an eye out for potential spills and prevent them from occurring.  If you want more information on spill prevention, contact your local MOECC District Office.  Contact information can be found on the Ontario government website www.ontario.ca.. When a spill does occur, the owner is responsible for reporting it to the MOECC and take actions to clean it up in a timely manner.  Report any spills to the MOECC through the Spills Action Centre which is staffed 24 hours/day at 1-800-268-6060.

VQA Ontario News — October 2017

VQA Ontario News — October 2017


Don’t forget that the brix minimums are higher for appellation designated wines than for “Ontario” designated wines. You might need to pay close attention to meeting brix minimums this year if you want to make sure wines do not have to be declassified to Ontario. Click here for a quick reference chart of VQA brix requirements.

Read more for news on Icewine Pre-registration, Pre-registration for skin-fermented white wines, LENS Winemakers Forum, and Industry Performance Study.

The history behind the fruit supplier to Niagara’s best vineyards

October 19, 2017 - Beppi Crosarial for the Globe and Mail

Grape grower Warren Saunders wastes no time greeting me as I pull into the steep driveway that leads up and around to the back of his farmhouse. Before I can knock, he's heard car wheels on dirt and pre-emptively emerges with a warm smile into the Niagara sunshine in rubber boots, jeans and a crisp blue beret, followed by his daughter, Ann-Marie.

I've come to inquire about the current harvest and the challenges of farming organically during the mildew-plagued summer of 2017, which saw unrelenting rains and a record-high level in nearby Lake Ontario. But I'm soon treated to time-travel in the bargain. The elder Saunders is 96, a veteran of 52 harvests, during which he's watched the local wine industry go from Baby Duck to biodynamics and crude jugs to trophy bottles.

Click here to read more


Grape Growers of Ontario meet with Premier Wynne

October 13, 2017 - ST. CATHARINES, ON: Grape harvest is in full swing in Ontario, and the Grape Growers of Ontario welcomed the opportunity to meet with Premier Kathleen Wynne in the vineyards of grape grower Bill George in Beamsville.

The Premier had a birds-eye view of the vineyards from the seat of a harvester. The harvest is at the mid-point with white varieties such as Riesling and Chardonnay typically harvested early in the season followed by the later maturing red varieties.  While the rain has slowed down harvest this week, the return to warm and dry weather is expected over the next week.

Pictured: Honourable Kathleen Wynne, Premier of Ontario; Bill George, Vice Chair, Ontario Fruit & Vegetable Growers' Association; Matthias Oppenalender, Chair, Grape Growers of Ontario.

Ontario Government helping promote VQA wines in Metro grocery stores

October 6, 2017: Toronto – To cap off Ontario Agriculture Week celebrations, MPP for Beaches-East York Arthur Potts announced that the Ontario government is providing the Grape Growers of Ontario with $20,000 in funding to implement their “We Grow the Wines You Love” campaign.

The campaign will promote the availability of VQA wines, made with 100% Ontario grapes, and highlight the importance of buying local at 10 Metro retail store locations across the province.  Along with promotional displays, Doug Whitty, this year’s Grape King, will engage shoppers with in-store sampling and tips on wine and food pairings.

The Grape Growers of Ontario is one of nineteen local food projects across the province that will receive nearly $500,000 in new investments through the provinces Local Food Investment Fund, administered by the Greenbelt Fund.

Pictured (L to R): Dave Dinning, Sr Director Operations Metro; Andy King, District Manager; John Crisafulli, Store Manager, Metro Danforth Ave; Matthias Oppenlaender, Chair, Grape Growers of Ontario; Burkhard Mausberg, Greenbelt Fund; Arthur Potts, MPP Beaches-East York; Doug Whitty, 2017 Grape King.

Call for 2018 NPF&VGA Research Proposals

The Niagara Peninsula Fruit & Vegetable Growers' Association invites 2018 Research Proposal submissions until Friday, December 1st, 2017. Further details can be found in the links below, or by contacting Kelle Neufeld at 905-688-0990 x 236 or npfvga@gmail.com.

NPF&VGA Research and Service Proposals
Researcher's Application Form
NPF&VGA Current Priorities

French Connection - John Howard brings France and Canada together through the love of wine

The Invidiata Collection Fall 2017 - Preferred Publishing

The Grape Growers of Ontario congratulate John Howard, who was featured in the Fall Issue of The Invidiata Collection for bringing France and Canada together through the love of wine.

Click here to read the article.