New Processor

Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food has released Starting a Winery publication 815 to help understand the complexities of managing a commercial wine business in Ontario. The publication provides information on industry organizations, business planning and understanding regulations, licences and authorizations.

The publication may be downloaded in pdf format at : Starting a Winery - (English) for the English and Starting a Winery - (French) for the French version. Ordering instructions for print copies through ServiceOntario are also available at this location.

The 2014 Starting a Winery financial planning publication prepared by Brock University Goodman School of Business can be downloaded here.


Ontario Alcohol and Gaming Regulation and Public Protection Act, 1996
Ontario Farm Products Marketing Act, 1990
Ontario Liquor Control Act, 1990
Ontario Liquor Licence Act, 1990
Ontario Vintners Quality Alliance Act, 1999
Ontario Wine Content and Labelling Act, 2000


Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO)
Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO)
Ontario Farm Products Marketing Commission (OFPMC)
Vintners Quality Alliance Ontario (VQAO)


Canadian Vintners Association
Wine Council of Ontario
Winery and Grower Alliance of Ontario


To process wine, juice or Icewine:

1. A Licence to Process Grapes is required in order to process grapes for the intent to sell.

Application for a Licence to Process Grapes

 2. A Manufacturer’s Liquor Licence is required to sell Ontario wines to the LCBO.

Application & Guide for a New or Transferred Manufacturer’s Liquor Licence
Personal History Report (this form has to be completed and sent with the Application for a Manufacturer's Licence)

3. An Application for an On-Site Winery Retail Store Authorization is needed for the retail sale of wine made by a manufacturer (at the site of production).

Winery Retail Store Information Guide  
Application for an On-Site Winery Retail Store Authorization
Municipal Information for a Retail Store Authorization (this form has to be completed and sent with the Application for an On-Site Winery Retail Store Authorization)
Sampling Guidelines for Liquor Manufacturers 

4. Membership in VQA Ontario and compliance with its rules and regulations is required to enable a winery to label wines with terms and descriptors regulated by the VQA Act and regulations.

VQA Membership Application Form

To press Icewine or late harvest grapes for juice (for the intent to sell):

1a. An Icewine or late harvest juice processing number is required from the Grape Growers of Ontario (GGO). It is mandatory for all estimate tonnage to be reported to the GGO via an electronic weigh bill.

Processing number form

1b. Icewine or late harvest juice needs to be registered with VQA.

VQA contact information