WOLFVILLE, N.S. -- The federal and provincial governments are helping fund a research lab in the heartland of Nova Scotia's blossoming wine industry.
The new facility at Acadia University in Wolfville will receive $487,960 over two years, with Ottawa contributing the lion's share.
The lab, expected to open this summer, will bring together experts including food scientists, dietitians, biochemists, plant physiologists and food and beverage producers.
There are about 20 wineries operating in the province's small-but-mighty industry, which the government says boasted sales of $15.4 million last year and accounts for $7.3 in wages annually.
The funding is through a five-year cost-sharing agreement between Ottawa, the provinces and territories for agricultural projects.
The lab will be located in Acadia's chemistry building and used for both academic research and industry collaboration.
Premier Stephen McNeil says the government wants to see the industry thrive.
"Nova Scotia's wine industry has potential for tremendous growth that will lead to more jobs and more exports and our goal is to assist it where we can," he said Tuesday.
Keith Colwell, the province's agriculture minister, said the lab has been identified as a priority by the Nova Scotia Wine Development Board.
The board was created in 2014 to capitalize on the industry's potential for growth, identify opportunities and give advice on legislation, regulation and policy development. It's made up of representatives from the province's wineries, grape growers and other support services including the Nova Scotia Liquor Corp.
"They know this will help to build knowledge and expertise right here that can help the industry grow," said Colwell.