Canadian Wines

Goodness from Grape to Glass

From rich, velvety Merlots to crisp, elegant Rieslings, Canada's wines are garnering worldwide attention. Many of our wines can be cellared for years to develop the subtlest tones of fruits, flowers and spices, while others can be in the glass soon after bottling. But no matter what the event, from a holiday celebration to a fine meal enjoyed quietly at home, Canadian wineries produce quality wines that can grace any table.

Perfect finishes

Almost all the grapes for Canada's wineries are grown in the southern parts of British Columbia and Ontario, where sun-drenched summers give way to warm, lingering autumns. Like the cool-climate wine districts of New Zealand, Germany and parts of France, these Canadian regions enjoy an ideal climate for the slow maturing of the grapes, a leisurely ripening that ensures just the right balance of acidity and sweetness in the finished wines. A small but growing number of wineries operate in Quebec and Nova Scotia, although these account for only a small percentage of total production.

Just desserts

Icewines are probably the best known of all Canadian vintages. Their unique and luscious sweetness has given them a leading reputation among the world's sweet wines. The production of these flagship wines is very carefully regulated to ensure quality. Temperatures must fall to at least -8°C at which time the grapes can be hand-picked and pressed while still frozen when sugar concentrations are at their maximum. The resulting wines are of spectacular smoothness and richness, and, because of their small yields, they command premium prices. In fact, Canadian Icewines have won the highest awards at many of the world's most prestigious wine fairs, including Vinexpo and VinItaly.

Vintage quality

Canada's wineries are enjoying increasing success both at home and abroad — in fact, Canadian wine production continues to increase. Our high-quality grapes and excellent growing conditions, together with our investments in world-class wineries and new varieties, have contributed enormously to this success. Equally important for buyer confidence, the quality of our premium wines is regulated in Ontario and British Columbia by the Vintners Quality Alliance (VQA), a regulatory and appellation of origin systems similar to France's AOC, Italy's DOC and Germany's QmP. (Quebec and Nova Scotia have their own regulatory systems, which are not called VQA).

Taste the Canadian difference

Canada produces wines for every taste and occasion which appeal to the most discriminating palate. For further information on Canada's wine industry, please visit:

Government websites

Industry websites

Trade Statistics

The following tables represent Canada's total trade in a given export commodity based on Statistics Canada data. The product categories represent HS code groupings and have not been modified. In most cases, statistics have been presented at the 6 or 8 digit level. Statistics are presented in Canadian dollars and are complete through year end 2010.

Canada's Exports to All Countries (HS Code 2204) - ($CAD)
  2008 2009 2010 2011 Growth 2008-2011
Wine of fresh grapes 20,291,031 19,160,267 27,903,332 36,869,391 81.7%

Canada's Exports to All Countries (HS Code 2204) - (Quantity, Litre)
  2008 2009 2010 2011 Growth 2008-2011
Wine of fresh grapes 7,786,681 10,710,538 14,893,263 21,642,309 177.9%

Canada's Exports to All Countries by Province (HS Code 2204, Value $CAD)
Province 2008 2009 2010 2011
Alberta 1,182,295 1,400,468 1,862,905 1,696,745
British Columbia 1,399,673 3,068,549 5,514,432 5,758,068
Manitoba 5,142 0 0 0
New Brunswick 0 0 0 50,530
Newfoundland and Labrador 0 138,085 34,727 365,213
Nova Scotia 7,032 0 8,268 141,243
Nunavut 0 0 1,794 32,259
Ontario 15,791,058 11,719,854 16,653,385 23,159,015
Prince Edward Island 1,948 0 0 0
Québec 1,903,883 2,833,311 3,827,821 5,666,318

Canada's Top 10 Wine Markets (HS Code 2204, Value $CAD)
Country 2008 2009 2010 2011 Growth 2008-2011
TOTAL: 20,291,031 19,160,267 27,903,332 36,869,391 81.7%
United States 9,133,849 6,597,717 9,656,998 15,806,256 73.1%
China 2,794,465 5,007,256 9,148,405 10,580,609 278.6%
Hong-Kong 816,017 653,515 2,241,293 2,122,856 160.1%
South Korea 2,500,998 1,562,625 1,618,111 1,823,022 -27.1%
United Kingdom 611,439 629,126 1,159,397 1,269,486 107.6%
Singapore 850,728 1,167,676 999,681 1,238,915 45.6%
France 97,163 40,162 305,293 1,048,879 979.5%
Japan 1,160,637 651,075 562,858 954,146 -17.8%
Taiwan 665,485 379,371 635,801 797,403 19.8%
Malaysia 232,122 233,268 180,282 234,482 1.0%