The Ontario’s South Coast Wineries and Growers Association has elected a new Board of Directors, naming Nick Vranckx of Blueberry Hill Estates Winery as President.
“I am honoured to have been selected as President and I look forward to working with OSCWGA members to ensure the organization’s continued success,” Vranckx said. “Ontario’s South Coast is being recognized more and more for quality grape and fruit wine production and it’s an exciting time to be at the forefront of the Association. My goals for the Association include continuing to improve the quality of our grape growing, gaining further recognition for our region’s wines, and helping develop the area’s wine and food culture.”
Vranckx succeeds Mike McArthur as President. This ends his involvement as a Board member, Chair and President. He has been active in the Association since its founding 8 years ago. Mike was recently appointed a Judge with the Ontario Court of Justice in Guelph.
“It has been a real privilege to lead this organization representing the wineries in Haldimand, Norfolk, and Elgin,” said McArthur. “It’s an exciting time for us as we continue to further the goal of becoming our own DVA appellation. The organization’s strategic goals are being realized and I have been glad to be a part of this sustained effort and achievement. The Association is in a good place for the future.”
The Executive Committee also consists of Dr. John Kelly, Vice President, Ron Barr, Treasurer and Kim Ludwig, Secretary. Elected to the Board were: Karen Matthews, Burning Kiln Winery; Kim Ludwig, Wooden BearL; Dr. John Kelly; Richard Czerlau, Frisky and Gamble; Rob Gill, Villa Nova Estates Winery; Shantel Bosgoed, Inasphere Winery.
The Board thanked Phil Ryan of Villa Nova Estates Winery, Joe Czerlau of Frisky and Gamble, Ryan Bosgoed of Inasphere and Mike McArthur of Burning Kiln Winery for their service and look forward to continuing working with them in their capacity on some of the many committees of the board.
The board also recognized the following members that are continuing on for another year of office: Anita Buehner, Bonnieheath Estate Lavender and Winery; Andrew Shelswell, Golden Leaf Winery; Mat Vaughan, Hounds of Erie Winery; Phil Ryan, Villa Nova Estates Winery; and Ron Barr, Rush Creek Winery.
In the fall of 2016, the Association applied for Designated Viticulture Status (DVA) under the title, ‘Norfolk County’ which includes wineries in Haldimand, Norfolk, and Elgin. This application is currently under consideration by VQA Ontario. If passed, Norfolk County will become the newest DVA in Canada and would join Niagara, Prince Edward County, and Lake Erie North Shore as official appellations.
“VQA is about place,” states VQA Ontario. “Special places right here at home. Places like nowhere else in the world. Where the soil, the slope, the sunshine, the warmth, the rainfall and the craftsmanship all matter. Together, they give us better grapes. And better grapes give us better wine.”
The OSCWGA is a non-profit organization that represents an emerging wine region along Lake Erie – in Haldimand, Norfolk and Elgin Counties. The organization’s mission is to “Cultivate a distinct and vibrant wine region in Ontario’s South Coast”. The organization currently has nine winery partners including Blueberry Hill Estates, Bonnieheath Estate Lavender & Winery, Burning Kiln Winery, Frisky & Gamble Cellars, Golden Leaf Winery, Quai du Vin, Rush Creek, Wooden BearL, and Villa Nova Estate Winery.