Stephen Fuhr, Member of Parliament for Kelowna-Lake Country is pleased to acknowledge that British Columbia is one step closer to the establishment of a learning centre focused on British Columbia’s wine industry.
On April 19th, federal and provincial agriculture ministers on behalf of the governments of Canada and British Columbia, announced $75,000 in cost-shared funding to support a feasibility study for a BC Wine Centre of Excellence.
A BC Wine Centre of Excellence would serve as an educational platform for B.C.’s wine and tourism industry, helping visitors learn more about our province’s unique wine-growing regions, as well as the winemaking process.
The two-phased feasibility study led by industry experts will provide in-depth research on existing international wine centres of excellence and offer a catalogue of business models, best practices and other relevant considerations, with respect to the development and ongoing operations of such a centre.
Additionally, the feasibility study will involve stakeholder engagement with wineries throughout B.C. to determine the feasibility and scope of a BC Wine Centre of Excellence.
It is anticipated that both phases of the feasibility study will be completed by the summer of 2018.
“The very first vines in British Columbia were planted in Kelowna by Father Pandosy in 1859. Since then the Okanagan Valley has earned a reputation as BC’s premier grape growing region, accounting for 84% of B.C.’s vineyard acreage, “said MP Fuhr. “The development of a learning centre will strengthen our local economy and raise awareness of Okanagan grape growing and I thank the governments of Canada and BC for their support of British Columbia’s world class wine industry.”