New campaign aims to boost resilient BC wine industry and shine a light on local heroes after climate-related setbacks
BRITISH COLUMBIA (October 4, 2023) — A new campaign launched today by Wine Growers British Columbia urges the public to “Fall for BC Wine” this season, by choosing BC wine at liquor stores and restaurants, and by visiting BC wine country to celebrate the harvest. As part of the campaign — and to thank the community for its support — Wine Growers British Columbia (WGBC) is seeking to recognize deserving individuals who went above and beyond during this recent wildfire season, with one lucky community hero set to win an all-expenses paid VIP trip to BC wine country in November.
Relatively young in the world of wine, BC’s modern wine industry is one of the province’s rising economic stars. As of March 2023, there were 341 licensed grape wine wineries in the province, and BC VQA Wine is the second-best-selling category in BC, with greater than 19 per cent of the market (behind only BC non-VQA wine). In 2019, BC wineries welcomed almost 1.2 million visitors, generating over $600 million in associated revenue for the province. Including both tourism and retail, BC’s wineries generally contribute about $3.75 billion annually to the provincial economy.
Recently however, the sector’s exciting momentum has been disrupted by a series of challenging climate-related setbacks causing an estimated 54 per cent reduction in 2023 crops, and longer-term damage to 45 per cent of the total planted acreage, with a projected $133 million in direct revenue lost this year alone. This setback was compounded by BC’s record-breaking wildfire season again impacting tourism to wine country, and causing many in the winemaking community to be evacuated.
“Winemaking has never been an industry for the faint of heart — resilience is a prerequisite,” said Miles Prodan, President and CEO of WGBC. “However, these setbacks are temporary. We’ve always been fortunate to have enormous support for the wines of BC from local consumers and, with them behind us, we know the industry will overcome these challenges. We’re looking forward to an exciting future for BC wine.”
With “Fall for BC Wine,” WGBC has offered numerous ways to support BC growers and producers through actions such as buying local, planning travel to BC’s wine-growing regions, and helping to get the message out on social media using the #FallForBCWine hashtag.
Supporters can help in a number of ways:
- Choose BC wine during the next shopping trip at a favourite wine store
- Choose BC wine as a gift for an upcoming occasion
- Order a glass or bottle of BC wine while dining out
- Visit a BC winery or farm stand
- Choose a BC wine region for your next getaway
- Nominate a deserving individual impacted by recent wildfires
- Share that support and spread the word using the #FallforBCWine hashtag
“If people are looking for ways to support local, the best way is to simply buy BC,” says Joanna Schlosser, Co-Owner and CEO Niche Wine Company. “Those purchases not only have a regenerative effect on small, local businesses but the community as a whole.”
“FALL FOR BC WINE” NOMINATION CAMPAIGN
Wine Growers British Columbia is inviting BC residents to engage with the “Fall for BC Wine” campaign by nominating a ‘Community Hero’ who stepped up for their community during BC’s 2023 wildfire crisis. Whether a first responder, a community volunteer, or someone who took in those in need, the industry wants to help recognize hometown heroes. One lucky recipient from the pool of nominees will win an all-expenses paid VIP trip for two to BC Wine Country this November.
For more information on the “Fall for BC Wine” campaign and how to nominate a deserving individual, visit the Wine Growers BC website, and follow @WinesofBC on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and TikTok. Wine industry trade news @WineGrowersBC.