Charges were laid under the authority of the Vintners Quality Alliance Act, 1999. Standards and legislation regulating Ontario’s wines of origin are similar to those in place in all major wine producing regions.
Long Dog Vineyard and Winery Inc. was charged with using terms regulated under the VQA Act without the approval of the wine authority. The charges stem from allegations that the winery used the regulated term “Prince Edward County” on the label of a wine that was not approved. These charges are expected to be heard by the Provincial Offenses Court in the fall of 2016.
"VQA Ontario’s role is to ensure designated terms of origin are used only to describe wines that meet specific requirements and are made from grapes grown in the declared region." said Laurie Macdonald, Executive Director of VQA Ontario. "The approval process and independent verification of label claims protects both consumers and wineries by maintaining a fair and informed marketplace." She emphasized that integrity in origin labelling is especially important since wine is uniquely defined by the place the grapes are grown, and Ontario consumers are increasingly interested in authentic local wines.
VQA Ontario is an independent regulatory authority that has been delegated the responsibility for administering the Vintners Quality Alliance Act, 1999 by the Ontario government.
VQA Ontario establishes, monitors and enforces a system of labeling and quality standards and verifies wine origin for Ontario-grown wines. Only those wines evaluated and approved by VQA Ontario may use designated label terms and descriptions. These include geographical terms such as "Niagara Peninsula", "Lake Erie North Shore", and "Prince Edward County" as well as "VQA" and terms that are linked to regulated production processes such as "Icewine" and "Late Harvest".
For more information contact:
Laurie Macdonald, VQA Ontario