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Sunday, July 19, 2009

GOSH: New fruit and vegetable wines for Ontario, LCBO shut out.


TRAWNA – (GOSH Wine News Services) – In a surprise announcement today, the Government of Ontario, A Have-Not Province, has mandated that a new wine be created to aid the fruit and vegetable farmers of Ontario. Fruit wineries have been conscripted to ferment and bottle the must.


Top investigative wine reporter Brett Grimsby has been following this story for weeks now, and he files his report based on several interviews with Miffed Mole, the collective name for our sources who are familiar with the situation, and who spoke to him on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to divulge details while they were very close to the centre of discussions and while the matter under consideration had not yet been finalized nor announced to the public. While the decisions may or may not have been finalized internally, and while an announcement on the matter may or may not be imminent, possibly within the next week or two, that specific timeline is not really known.


The wine, to be known as Freggie™, is a blend of 70% fruit wines and 30% vegetable wines, all to come from 100% Ontario growth. Our sources tell us that the product will be launched in 250mL, 500mL and lL TetraPaks. Apparently, it is to be sold only at farmers' markets in Ontario, year round, with a limited alcohol content of 10%.


Official representation has come from the Association for Cellared in Canada Wines, who have also determined that the old slogans and advertisements for the 1950s Canadian Freshie™ beverage mix have fallen into the public domain. They can now be reused, with the word "Freggie™".


Not to be outdone, the upstart Canadian Cellared in Canada Wine Group has come up with its own wine, to be known as V-8/F-4™, a collection of eight vegetable wines plus four fruit wines in a 70% vegetable wine and 30% fruit wine spread, reversing the percentages used in Freggie™. Their marketing slogan involves the phrase "Root Cellared in Canada Wines".


When asked to comment, Jim Warren (still busy chairing seven Ontario wineries plus one in Nova Scotia) who is Executive Director for Life of the Fruit Wines of Ontario, said: "While we regret not being to sell our fruit-only wines at farmers' markets in Ontario, we are happy to be making and bottling the wines. We have underused capacity at every fruit winery, and this will make for gainful employment. As a former Latin teacher, I wish them well and suggest a motto: Nunquam spuemus."


Sources at the LCBO, A Crown Corporation, said that management was disappointed that they were left out of the process. "We have so much to offer Freggie™ and V-8/F-4™ through our distribution channels that the wines would not normally be sold at. Not everyone can get to a farmers' market in Ontario. But I guess that they were unhappy with how we reacted to the Cellared in Canada wine, "Charlie's Winesluts."


Initial pre-orders from vegan restaurants have been encouraging.


More on this story as it develops.


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