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Canada, U.S. Wine’s Top Export Market, Considering Steep Tariffs After WTO Ruling

May 19, 2015

Retail sales of U.S. wine reached a record-high in Canada in 2014, surpassing $1 billion, but the Wine Institute fears that the Canadian government may be on the verge of enacting retaliatory tariffs that would severely hamper U.S. wine exports to the country. After yesterday’s announcement by the World Trade Organization that the U.S. continues to violate WTO rules with its Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) on meat products, the Wine Institute—which represents roughly 1,000 California wineries and affiliated businesses—says that Canada and Mexico could fight back with tariffs that would drive up the price of U.S. products such as wine.

It’s estimated that tariffs put in place by Canada could effectively double the price of U.S. wine in Canada, which in recent years became the largest export market for U.S. wine. The Wine Institute is now urging Congress to bring the U.S. into compliance on COOL.

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