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Okanagan wine served in the sky

It's a first for the Canadian wine industry, and great news for frequent Westjet flyers.

BC wines will now be served on new WestJet Encore routes in Western Canada servicing: Vancouver, Victoria, Nanaimo, Edmonton,Calgary, Fort St. John, Grand Prairie, Saskatoon, Regina and Brandon.

The concept to serve BC wines from the Okanagan Valley stems from a partnership between WestJet and the Okanagan Wine Festivals Society.

Marshall Wilmot, WestJet Vice President, Product and Distribution says the company was looking for a special way to promote new destinations and routes with the launch of WestJet Encore.

"Having worked with the wineries of British Columbia through the Okanagan Wine Festivals Society for more than 10 years, we know that the wines of British Columbia are extremely well respected and the region is recognized as one of the premium wine regions in the world. Never before on a scheduled airline in Canada have the wines of British Columbia been featured in this manner, and we are proud to do so."

Modelled after a Horizon Air program in the US using Oregon and California wines, this will be a first for a major Canadian air carrier.

"We are sponsoring a promotional bottle pour on board the new WestJet Encore Bombardier Q400 NextGen aircraft whereby every guest will have a choice of two wines to sample for the summer months," explained Eric von Krosigk, Chair of the Okanagan Wine Festivals Society and winemaker at Summerhill Pyramid Winery in Kelowna.

"This pouring allows thousands of customers to be introduced to our wines, our wine region and our Okanagan Wine Festivals which draw tens of thousands of wine tourists to our region annually."

In the month of July they are: Gray Monk Estate Winery, Lang Vineyards, Oliver Twist, Perseus Winery, Blasted Church Vineyards, SunnyBrae Vineyards in Tappen, The View Winery, Therapy Vineyards, St, Hubertus Winery, and Wayne Gretzky Okanagan.

Next month the participating wineries include: Road 13 Vineyards, the Vibrant Vine, Ganton & Larsen Prospect Winery, Sumac Ridge Estate Winery, See Ya Later Ranch, Inniskillin Okanagan Estate Winery, and Jackson Triggs Okanagan Estate.

The promotion applies only to WestJet flights operated by WestJet Encore during the months of July, August and September.

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