Quebec Icewine Must Keep Its Label
NDP MPS support Quebec wine producers in their efforts to save the “ice wine” label
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) must respond to arguments from Quebec ice wine producers and not unilaterally adopt a regulation that would make it impossible to produce officially recognized ice wine in Quebec, said NDP MPS Pierre Jacob (Brome–missisquoi) and Jean Rousseau (Compton– Stanstead).
On January 16, the CFIA announced it was going to regulate ice wine production in Canada that would restrict the “ice wine” label to production where grapes naturally freeze on the vine. But Quebec producers have long been using a technique called “filleting,” which makes it possible to obtain just as good a quality product despite the province’s harsh climate, but doesn’t meet the Agency’s new standard.
“Ice wine production techniques in Quebec reflect the specific nature of the climate here,” said Pierre Jacob, whose riding has numerous wine producers. “This must be taken into account in order to integrate Quebec products into the definition of ice wine.”
On January 27, Jacob met with the president of the Quebec Winegrowers Association, Mr. CharlesHenri from Coussergues, to discuss the implications of a potential new regulation for ice wine produced in Quebec.
“Ice wine is a major product of the Quebec’s wine sector, recognized in Canadian and international markets,” added Jean Rousseau, Official Opposition Deputy Critic for Agriculture and Agri- Food. “A too restrictive approach for ice wine labelling, on a technical detail with no effect on quality, would penalize the commercialization of this artisanal product that contributes to the region’s economic vitality.”