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  • Jancis Robinson
Written by
  • Jancis Robinson
7 Oct 2009

I have just received this encouraging news from the authorities in Ontario in response to our campaign to clean up labelling and merchandising of imported blends in Canada, generally described as Cellared in Canada.  As reported in Canadian giants start to clean up, progress is being made on the other side of the country in British Columbia too:

Dear Jancis,

As you all know, the Wine Council of Ontario has recently been engaged in many public and private discussions on the issue of the labeling and display of Cellared In Canada wines. We are listening to consumers, and we are not deaf to their concerns about the current labeling and shelving of these products. As leaders in the industry from across our business, it was clear to our Board that we needed to undertake a review of this critical issue immediately, in a comprehensive way – out of respect to these concerns – and to act on these concerns quickly and in a thorough way.

Industry Working Group on Label Clarity

The Wine Council has formed the Industry Working Group on Label Clarity to develop industry-led improvements to the labeling of blended wines.

Our Board gave this committee a strict timeline for response - it has been mandated to report back by 31 Dec, 2009 in order to ensure attention to this important review and to demonstrate that we are serious about implementing improvements on a timely basis. Nevertheless the process will be comprehensive with a thorough examination of potential changes. Among the elements to be reviewed will be:

• Wording on labels including use of CIC

• In store signage and shelving – both at LCBO and WRS

• Look alike labels/Look alike logos

• Logo for CIC brands

• Font size/typeface issues and location on labels

• Measuring consumer reaction to demonstrate that clarity is present/has improved

As part of this review, the Wine Council of Ontario has commissioned a national public opinion research company to conduct a series of in-depth telephone interviews with elite stakeholders dealing with the labeling and display of these wines. We are hopeful that you will be willing to be part of these discussions.

The interview should take 15-45 minutes to complete and has been designed to further gauge the thoughts and opinions of elite opinion leaders on this critical issue.

Beginning next week, our firm of record will be contacting your office to arrange an appointment with you to participate in the conversation.

Please appreciate that the Wine Council has asked the firm to ensure that all responses will be kept strictly confidential and will not reference any individual participants or their responses in their final report. Your opinions are very important to us and we look forward to your thoughtful participation.

Thank you

Ed Madronich

On behalf of the Board of Directors

Wine Council of Ontario

from 7 Oct 2009 16:17