Another excellent story from the Welland Tribune that while detailing the difficulties that Ontario wineries face, suggests strongly that the government should help passionate, artisanal wine growers and makers by allowing private retail stores to sell wine.
But so much more can and should be done to open more of the Ontario market to Ontario wineries, and that is wholly in the domain of the provincial government. Sales of Ontario wines have essentially flat-lined, yet the single largest retailer of alcohol and spirits in the province is the provincial government. Simply allowing private wine stores in Ontario would open sales opportunities that don't currently exist for small and medium wineries.
I also agree that something should be done about the "Cellared in Canada" label. These wines are nothing more than imported wine with a deceiving label that fool people in to thinking that they are being patriotic buying a Canadian made product when in fact they are not.
And that is another area where the province can help: wine content and labelling regulations. Only a few of Ontario's 100-plus wineries are allowed to make blended wines -containing up to 70 per cent imported juice -yet these so-called "cellared in Canada" wines dominate Ontario sales.