Western Economic Diversification Canada

Western Economic Diversification Canada

July 24, 2015 19:00 ET

Harper Government Supports International Growth for British Columbia's Wine Industry

KELOWNA, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - July 24, 2015) - Western Economic Diversification Canada

Today, the Honourable Michelle Rempel, Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification, announced a $630,000 investment for the University of British Columbia's (UBC) Okanagan campus to strengthen the British Columbia (B.C.) wine industry's export readiness and global identity for international growth.

With funding from the Government of Canada, UBC Okanagan will provide impartial guidance and expertise, and will work with the B.C. wine industry to: clarify and promote B.C.'s unique identity as a wine region; gather intelligence from international trade shows; host workshops, symposiums and towns halls; and develop online tools to strengthen collaboration between key industry players.

The global wine market holds great potential for an emerging wine region such as that found in B.C. By improving the industry's capacity and raising its international profile, this project will ensure that B.C. wine remains competitive and ready to take on new opportunities.

Quick Facts

  • B.C. is a key wine region within Canada and houses nearly 270 wineries and 900 vineyards, on approximately 10,000 acres of land.
  • The B.C. wine sector contributes $2 billion annually to the province's economy, and provides employment for over 10,000 workers.
  • Funding from the Government of Canada is being provided through the Western Diversification Program.

Quotes

"The B.C. wine industry enjoys strong local demand, but an enhanced international presence is critical for future sustainability and growth. Through today's funding, our Government is helping to promote collaboration in B.C.'s wine industry and create a cohesive brand that will showcase the region's unique character on the world stage and generate opportunities to expand globally."

- The Honourable Michelle Rempel, Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification

"Our Government recognizes the importance of the wine industry to our region's future growth and prosperity. This initiative is an excellent example of how industry, academia and government can work together to strengthen the economy."

- The Honourable Ron Cannan, Member of Parliament for Kelowna-Lake Country

"Universities have a fundamental role to play in driving economic development, including through knowledge creation and transfer in partnership with industry. Working with the B.C. wine industry, UBC will serve as a convener for the sector and international experts to come together to create an expanded, globally competitive wine region."

- Professor Deborah Buszard, Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Principal, UBC

Additional Links

- Statement by the Honourable Michelle Rempel Highlighting the Value of B.C.'s Wine Industry

- Trade and Investment Opportunities in Western Canada

- University of British Columbia's Okanagan Campus

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Contact Information

  • Nicholas Insley
    Office of the Minister
    Western Economic Diversification
    613-220-6208
    nicholas.insley@wd-deo.gc.ca

    Ben Stanford
    Regional Communications Manager
    Western Economic Diversification Canada
    604-666-3395
    ben.stanford@wd-deo.gc.ca

    Bud Mortenson
    Director, University Relations
    UBC Okanagan
    Telephone: 250-807-9255 / Cell: 250-864-3385
    bud.mortenson@ubc.ca

    WD Toll-Free Number: 1-888-338-WEST (9378)
    Teletypewriter (TTY): 1-877-303-3388
    Website: WD is online at www.wd-deo.gc.ca.