OIWSBA Celebrates 29th Annual Awards Dinner

    TORONTO, Feb. 11 /CNW/ - The Ontario Imported Wine-Spirit-Beer
Association (OIWSBA) held its 29th annual Awards Dinner last Friday evening,
honouring parties who have helped over the past year to enhance Ontario
consumers' knowledge of and appreciation for imported beverage alcohol
products. South Africa was the host country of this year's gala Dinner, held
at the National Club. Guests from across the industry enjoyed thematic gourmet
cuisine prepared by Executive Chef James Stewart, paired with premium products
from South Africa.

    After dinner, the following individuals were recognized by OIWSBA:
    -  OIWSBA Achievement Award - Wine writer Tony Aspler in recognition of
       his contributions to the industry over the past 30+ years;
    -  OIWSBA Hospitality Award - David Aisenstat (President and CEO, Keg
       Restaurants Limited), in recognition of his firm's success in
       enhancing the profile and appeal of imported beverage alcohol products
       in the Ontario marketplace;
    -  OIWSBA Industry Partnership Award - Greg Dunlop (Category Manager,
       New World Wines, LCBO Vintages), in recognition of his partnering with
       OIWSBA Members to enhance the appeal and enjoyment of imported
       beverage alcohol products;
    -  Jack Ackroyd Memorial Scholarship Award - honouring top-achieving
       Wine & Spirit Education Trust students Jacqueline Brisley, Paul
       Giroux, Tamara Jakes, Dianna Quinn, Carol Racicot and Alina Trefry
       (Intermediate Certificate) and Yang Lu (Advanced Certificate);
    -  Brian Kirkwood Memorial Scholarship Award - honouring top-achieving
       Wine & Spirit Education Trust student Elsa Macdonald (Diploma
       program); and
    -  Tony Aspler Blind Tasting Award - Eugene Mlynczyk (Vincor Canada).

    "We are very pleased to recognize the contributions that these award
recipients have made in raising the profile of imported beverage alcohol
products in the Ontario marketplace," said Christopher Churchill, President of
OIWSBA (and President, Churchill Cellars Ltd.). "They have helped to enhance
Ontario consumers' increasing enjoyment of premium products from around the

    Established in 1958, the Ontario Imported Wine-Spirit-Beer Association
(OIWSBA) is the provincial trade association representing manufacturers,
agents, importers, marketing groups and distributors of imported beverage
alcohol products in Ontario. Membership also includes a number of
international trade offices. OIWSBA members represent more than 90 per cent of
all imported beverage alcohol products sold in Ontario. Imported beverage
alcohol products continue to contribute significantly to the LCBO's record
transfers to the Government and taxpayers of Ontario. In fiscal 2005-06,
imported beverage alcohol products accounted for more than 57 per cent of LCBO
net sales on a value basis ($2.09 billion on LCBO net sales of $3.6 billion)
and almost 55 per cent of LCBO net sales on a volume basis (212.7 million
litres on LCBO net sales of 388.7 million litres).

    OIWSBA members are Ontario-owned businesses that provide employment to
more than 1,700 people across the province. Profits from the sale of imported
beverage alcohol products are used to support capital projects and social
programs right across Ontario. In addition, the sale of these products
supports significant secondary employment in many related industries

For further information:

For further information: Ian Campbell, Executive Director, OIWSBA, tel.:
(416) 699-9535, fax: (416) 699-3907, ian.campbell@oiwsba.com

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