The following are the final Task Group recommendations, revised April 16, 2016. Download a PDF copy here.

  1. We recommend that as a condition of having a winery license producers making wine from 100% BC grown grapes be required to become a member of the British Columbia Wine Authority (BCWA) and be subject to audits conducted and enforced per the Wines of Marked Quality regulations (“the Regulations”).
  2. We recommend changing the Wines of Distinction category name in the Regulations to British Columbia Wine. Both BC VQA and British Columbia Wine will be allowed to use the geographic indication on their labels.
  3. We recommend that taste panels are put to a review by the Wine Industry Advisory Committee (WIAC), and make reference to the results of the June 2015 BC Wine Task Group industry survey. The terms of reference should include a review of panel member qualifications, and whether to limit tasting to tank samples.
  4. After the establishment of a system of sub-GIs that should take no longer than January 1, 2019, we recommend that BCWA be given the authority to prohibit the use of any unregulated geographical indication associated with British Columbia on its members’ wine labels.
  5. We recommend that all wines made from 100 percent BC grapes must register as either British Columbia VQA (“BC VQA”) or British Columbia Wine in order to qualify for recognition as a Wine of British Columbia.
  6. We recommend Wines of British Columbia that use an approved sub-GI be required to display conjunctive labeling to show both the region and sub-region on the primary display panel. (See examples)

Golden Mile Bench, Okanagan Valley BC VQA


Golden Mile Bench
Okanagan Valley

  1. We recommend the establishment of new geographic indications in four emerging wine grape growing regions – Thompson Valley, Shuswap, Lillooet-Lytton and Kootenays – subject to a final review of the boundaries and in consultation with stakeholders within each region. [See document: Appellations – Emerging BC Regions]
  2. We recommend that industry review the proposed set of contiguous sub-regions of the Okanagan Valley as identified by the Task Group as the basis for establishing sub-geographic indications. [See document: Okanagan maps – Terroir boundaries (final Oct 26].As a guideline for naming these new sub- geographic indications, the Task Group recommends only accepting a village or town name, or a place name that is historically associated with a region. A defining geographical feature may also be used in combination with a village or place name.
  3. We recommend that the current 3 separate audits by the Liquor Control and Licensing Branch, BC Liquor Distribution Branch and the BC Wine Authority be harmonized into one.
  4. We recommend that BCWA seeks to establish a flat fee for small wineries, which covers the cost of membership, grape levies, audits and wine certification, with the appropriate production threshold not to exceed 50 tons, to be set by BCWA after consultation with WIAC.
  5. We recommend that section 29 (3) (c) of the Regulations be amended to include the following underlined phrase:

At least two thirds of the vote measured by registrants of productive wine grape acreage in a proposed geographical area or subdivision, who produce at least two thirds of the total production of wine made from grapes grown in that area or subdivision, must have voted, by ballot, in favour of the proposed geographical area or subdivision;

  1. We recommend deleting section 29 (3) (e) from the Regulations, and propose an additional review of the entire Section 29 by BCWA and WIAC.