Consumers “confused” by Cellared in Canada wine designation

17 December, 2009

Fewer than one in five Canadian wine drinkers can recognise and correctly understand the term “Cellared in Canada”, according to a new poll of wine drinkers in the country.

The study, conducted by market research agency Wine Intelligence, also found that the majority –  64% - of Canadian wine drinkers don’t even recognise the term “Cellared in Canada” when they see it.

Of the 36% of Canadian consumers who are aware of the term, about half correctly state that a wine carrying the Cellared in Canada designation is made from a combination of Canadian and foreign grapes, or from all imported grapes (the definition in British Columbia), which have been blended and bottled in Canada.

Wine Intelligence surveyed over 1,000 regular wine drinkers in Canada during October and November 2009. The survey was conducted online and the study was funded entirely by the agency itself, and was not sponsored.

According to Wine Intelligence, wines carrying the Cellared in Canada (CIC) designation, are currently sold in the “Canadian Wine” section of government-run liquor stores.

Canadian national Erika Neudorf, senior project executive at Wine Intelligence said: “Cellared in Canada wines have become a hot topic in the wine industry both in Canada and globally.

“The trade has strong opinions on the issue, but we wanted to know how consumers really feel about these wines.”

As part of the survey, Wine Intelligence told consumers what the term Cellared in Canada means, and just over half of the respondents think that this term is inappropriate. Of these consumers who are not happy with the term, 65% want to see the country of origin of the wine and percentage stated on the label. However the survey also found that 48% of Canadian consumers are quite happy with the status quo, and did not want to see the term Cellared in Canada disappear.

Richard Halstead, COO of Wine Intelligence said: “I think it’s fair to say that the term Cellared in Canada is currently not helping Canadian wine drinkers make a very informed choice.

“The sooner we see some clarification and reform in this area, the better off consumers will be.”

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