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Grape Growers of Ontario re-elect board





L-R (back): Erwin Wiens; Scott Wilkins; Doug Funk Jr.; Steve Pohorly; Brock Puddicombe; Jim Morrison (front): Kevin Watson; Rob Peck; Matthias Oppenlaender, Chair; Debbie Zimmerman, CEO; Bill Schenck, Vice Chair







April 13, 2018 - The Grape Growers of Ontario are pleased to announce that Matthias Oppenlaender has been re-elected as Chair of the Board of Directors for 2018/19. Also re-elected were Vice Chair Bill Schenck, and Directors Brock Puddicombe and Scott Wilkins.
Matthias was first elected as Board Chair in 2016, following six years as Vice Chair. In 2006, Matthias was chosen Grape King by his fellow grape growers as an ambassador to represent the industry at events across the country. Matthias, his wife Monica and their five children live in Niagara-on-the-Lake where they farm over 400 acres of vineyards.
Bill Schenck, a fourth-generation grape grower in St. Catharines, has served on the GGO Growers’ Committee and Board since 2009, the same year he was Grape King, and represents the Grape Growers of Ontario on a number of industry committees including the Niagara Regional Agricultural Policy and Action Committee and the Canadian Grapevine Certification Committee.
The Board of Directors involves representation from across Ontario including Kevin Watson, Steve Pohorly and Erwin Wiens of Niagara-on-the-Lake, Jim Morrison and Doug Funk Jr. of Lincoln, Brock Puddicombe of Winona, Scott Wilkins of Amherstburg, and Robert Peck of Prince Edward County.
The Grape Growers of Ontario actively represents the interests of our grower and winery members on many issues including working with Nova Scotia, Quebec and British Columbia on a national domestic rootstock program to provide growers with healthy, certified grapevines; and partnering with other organizations to access programs like the $60 million Edible Horticulture Support Program and an enhanced VQA Support Program for our wineries throughout Ontario.
The Grape Growers of Ontario supports and participates in consumer events across the province including the Niagara Grape and Wine Festival, EPIC Vintage Tasting and Prince Edward County's Terroir and Taste Community Grown. In 2018, we will provide an opportunity for consumers to discover grape growing up-close and KICK THE DIRT with local grape growers at the International Cool Climate Chardonnay Celebration (i4c).  Tickets are available at www.coolchardonnay.org