How drinking this new wine will help protect B.C. bears

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There’s a new wine available that will make you feel a little less guilty for indulging in a glass or two.

The BC SPCA has partnered with Northern Lights Estate Winery to launch ‘The Bear’, a new Pinot Gris-style wine with a purpose — to help keep black bears and grizzly bears safe.

The wine is made using surplus apples sourced from local properties, with the goal of deterring bears from entering developed areas in search of leftover or fallen fruit. Photo: Jeff Reibin

The BC SPCA said the wine is made using surplus apples sourced from local properties, with the goal of deterring bears from entering developed areas in search of leftover or fallen fruit.

Craig Daniell, chief executive officer of the BC SPCA, said bear encounters had become more frequent as urban development continued to expand into wild animal habitats, resulting in “tragic consequences.”

“In the fall, as bears prepare for hibernation they need to build up fat to survive the winter,” Daniell said.

“They seek out easily accessed foods, including compost, garbage and fruit trees. Unfortunately, these food sources bring bears and people closer together.”

He said over time, bears may lose their natural fear of people and start to associate them with food, which sadly leads to hundreds of ‘problem’ bears being killed by conservation officers in B.C. every year.

Daniell said the initiative is a creative example of how residents and businesses can make a difference for B.C. wildlife.

“We can all take easy steps to protect bears from becoming victims,” he said.

“And what better way to reward yourself for making the effort than with a glass of The Bear wine?”

In addition to protecting bears, the BC SPCA will receive $2 from each bottle sold to help animals in need.

If you’re more of a beer drinker, Vancouver Island Brewing recently launched a special edition Pod Pack in support of the Pacific Salmon Foundation. The federally incorporated non-profit charitable organization is dedicated to the conservation and restoration of wild Pacific salmon, which is a vital food source for killer whales.

The BC SPCA reminds people to do their part in keeping B.C. bears safe by being aware of the following attractants:

  • Ripe or fallen fruit
  • Unsecured garbage and compost/food scraps
  • Outdoor pet food storage
  • Bird feeders
  • Outdoor fridges and freezers
  • Bee hives
  • Chicken coops

Find more information on The Bear wine here.