BC wine industry standards raised

BC Wine Authority members and non-members have voted in favour of changes to meet international wine quality values.

BC Wine Authority members and non-members alike have voted in favour of changes aimed at raising the industry to international standards.

B.C.’s wine industry is set to move in a new direction.

Following a lengthy process to suss out where it was falling short and what direction it should go in, BC Wine Authority members and non-members alike voted in favour of changes aimed at raising the industry to international standards.

All but one of 11 recommendations set out by the BC Wine Appellation task group received double majorities of license holder support and production volume.

“(The recommendations) will bring integrity to our appellation system, and set us as an industry on a course based on a sense of place and premium value,” said Ezra Cipes, one of the 15-member task group, which was formed in March 2015,

Among the changes that industry members want to see is mandatory membership in a governing body.

“As a condition of having a BC winery licence, producers making wine from 100 per cent BC grown grapes should be required to become a member of the authority and be subject to audits conducted and enforced as per the regulation,” reads the document heading to agriculture minister Norm Letnick.

The Wine Authority will one day be given the power to prohibit the use of any unregulated geographical indication associated with B.C. members wine labels and new geographical indications be established for wine growing areas in the Thompson Valley, Shuswap, Lillooet-Lytton and Kootenays will be set.

New sub geographical indications will also be formalized so they can be on labels.

“There’s going to be a process until this kicks in,” said Cipes, noting that simply mapping the sub-geographical regions will likely take time.

Mapping out how the grapes in Oliver and Osoyoos are different than the grapes in Kelowna, and all the shades in between due to soil type and aspect, and then mapping it out, will take some time.

“We put forward a map showing 15 sub-geographical regions, based on those factors,” said Cipes, CEO of Summerhill Winery in Kelowna.

“Now the producers in those regions have to finalize the borders and come up with names for those regions that will allow them to develop a reputation for quality within those designations.”

Although it’s new for B.C., it’s how the rest of the world operates already.

“Now we are going to understand Okanagan terroir and vineyards in the same way as they do in, for example, Burgandy,” said Cipes.

Just Posted

RCMP hunt for suspect in West Kelowna bank robbery

Suspect used a note and fled bank Saturday with an undisclosed amount of cash

Community Leader Awards: Shelley Pacholok

The Kelowna Capital News honours those who give back in the community

International Arts Festival returns to Kelowna

Living Things is a month-long festival with live performances by artists from around the world

Legion bell prank hits sour note

Anger erupts after Summerland Legion member removes bell from Peachland Legion

Kelowna Art Gallery members’ exhibition offers variety of media

Encounters will be held from Dec. 2 to Feb. 3

Vehicle with dog inside stolen from Oliver gas station

A black Honda CRV was stolen from the Oliver Chevron early Sunday morning

Team Canada loses 5-2 over the Czech Republic at World Junior A Challenge

Vees’ Tychonick drops in one of Team Canada West’s pair of goals

Site C decision coming Monday

Premier John Horgan to announce fate of dam project at B.C. legislature

PIGS bring Pink Floyd sound to Kelowna

Victoria band pays tribute to iconic British band on Feb. 10 at Mary Irwin Theatre

Letter: Another flagger dies; when will you slow down?

You have all seen our signs, trucks and my favorite our cones. Why don’t you slow down?

Kelowna-developed technology to be unveiled at Summerhill

Kelowna winery and tech company introduces new technology for phone or tablet

California couple name daughter after Revelstoke

Revy Elle Atashroo was born on Nov. 27. Her name honours the town her parents loved exploring.

Most Read