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Block-and-tackle wine

Think of the great wine-producing regions of the world... France, Italy, California... but what about Canada? Challenged by climate and perception, Canadian wines suffered from a bad reputation. But winemakers have worked hard to improve the quality of their product. International awards, improved standards and government intervention have transformed the industry. The result? Canadian wines are gaining acceptance throughout the world.

One British Columbia wine writer compares wine making to show business, stating that you need a break to make you a star. Ken Visser recognizes that a strong marketing plan is one way to get that break. Visser takes a Canadian wine, designed specifically for the American palate, to New York City -- a highly competitive market where image is as important as taste. Venture's Gary Fowlie follows Visser through the streets of New York where he attempts to sell his Nordique Blanc on its northern image.
• British Columbia's Inkameep Vineyards, established in 1968, has become known for growing some of the best wine grapes in the area. Based on the accumulated wisdom of 35 years of grape growing, the Osoyoos Indian Band opened Nk'mip Cellars on Sept. 13, 2002. It is North America's first aboriginal owned and operated winery.
• In an effort to draw tourists, this Okanagan estate winery is building additional amenities including a heritage centre, golf course and conference centre.

Sounds Like Canada host Shelagh Rogers speaks with Osoyoos Indian Band chief Clarence Louie about the band's strong business sense and the success of their new venture.
• 25 per cent of the total acreage planted in the Okanagan Valley is on the band's land.
• The Reserve is now home to the largest contiguous plantings in the province; 250 acres of vineyards surrounded by desert brush.

• The business of wine, from grape growing and production through to marketing, is taught at the post-secondary level in both Ontario and British Columbia.
• Opened in 1996, the Cool Climate Oenology and Viticulture Institute at Brock University in St. Catharine's, Ont. is Canada's first degree-granting program dedicated to grape-growing and winemaking.

• The University of British Columbia's Wine Research Centre, opened in 1999, facilitates graduate-level research in oenology and viticulture.
• A Winery and Viticulture Technician program is offered at Niagara College, and a Winery Certificate program at Okanagan University College.
Medium: Television
Program: Venture
Broadcast Date: July 2, 1989
Guest(s): John Barney, Ken Visser
Announcer: Robert Scully
Reporter: Gary Fowlie
Duration: 8:33

Last updated: May 14, 2013

Page consulted on December 6, 2013

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