Canadian Food and Wine Institute Innovation Centre

Niagara College, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario
What the facility does

Food and beverage product/process development, laboratory analyses and regulatory assistance

Areas of expertise

The Canadian Food and Wine Institute Innovation Centre offers recipe and new product development; food and beverage safety and regulatory assistance; laboratory services; sensory analysis and consumer testing; and nutritional labelling services. Our resources include a microbiology lab; chemistry lab; food quality lab; a shelf-life lab; brewery; winery; and commercial kitchens.

Research services

Lab services, food safety services, product development services and commercialization services include: food and beverage product-process development; nutrition analysis; shelf-life testing; pathogen identification; beverage analysis; QA plan designs; HACCP/GFSI plans; point validation; process lethality; traceability and recall; education and training; labelling (regulatory); packaging and ingredient sourcing; co-packing referrals; competitive analysis; advertising/marketing plans; international market entry/export; e-commerce; and web design and development.

Sectors of application
  • Agriculture, animal science and food
  • Manufacturing and processing
  • Professional and technical services (including legal services, architecture, engineering)
  • Tourism and hospitality

Specialized lab



Microbiology Lab

Biosafety Cabinet; CO2-Incubator; Cryo-centrifuge; Spiral Plater; Colony Counter; Kinetic Microplate Reader

Food-safety capabilities, accredited Biosafety Level 2 Microbiology Lab to allow pathogen inoculation in packages (challenge test) to validate food and beverage industry processes;


Real-time PCR; Electrophoresis

Real-time Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) and gel imager for food pathogens’ detection and DNA fingerprint, detection and enumeration of beer and wine spoilage organism, screening for genetically modified organisms (GMO), and species origin confirmation.

Chemistry Lab

U-HPLC; UV-VIS Spectrophotometer; Gas Chromatograph; Automated Titrator; Ultrasonic Bath

Full suite of chemical analytical instruments including Ultra-High Performance Liquid Chromatograph (U-HPLC) and Gas Chromatograph with Flame Ionization Detector (GC-FID), determines multiple chemicals (volatile, semi-volatile and non-volatile) used in food and beverages, as well as contaminants or natural components.

Food Quality Lab


FTIR Wine Analyzer; Beer Analyzer; DO Meter; Non-destructive CO2 Laser Detector; Density Meter

Beverage analysis equipment: a Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) wine analyzer, to provide the full spectrum of wine parameters needed for both QC/QA and regulatory purposes.

Beer analyzer to test key parameters such as alcohol content, CO2 and O2 content, pH, color, haze, and specific gravity.


Texture Analyzer; Colorimeter; Water Activity Meter; Rheometer; Moisture Analyzer; Viscosity Meter; Refractometer

Testing of food quality attributes (consistency, pH, density, Brix, colour, moisture, texture, etc.).

Shelf-life Lab

Modified Atmosphere Packaging Unit; Bulk Tray Dryer; Walk-in Refrigerator/ Freezer; Freeze-drying Unit; Humidity Chambers; Thermal Validation Equipment

Several pieces of equipment for testing varied food industry processes (such as cooking and pasteurization, modified atmosphere effects, etc.).

Niagara College Teaching Brewery

Small-scale functional brewery and 3/4 Acre Research Hops Yard

Fully equipped to develop and trial beer and other beverage products.

Niagara College Teaching Winery

Small-scale functional winery and 40 Acre Production and Research Vineyard

Fully equipped to develop and trial wine and other fermented products.

Niagara College Culinary Labs

Full-scale commercial kitchens

Fully equipped to developed culinary products.

  • Inniskillin Niagara Estate
  • Neob botanical beverages
  • Niagara Food Specialties
  • Ontario Hop Growers’ Association
  • The Smokin’ Buddha
  • Vij’s at Home
  • Jal Gua Inc.
  • Planet Bean
  • Ontario Craft Brewers Association
  • Nuance Winery Supplies
  • Community Living
  • Kashruth Council of Canada
  • Black Angus Fine Meats and Game
  • Cankosh Inc.
  • MADD Virgin Drinks
  • Spirit Tree Estate Cidery
  • Durham Foods
  • Tersano
  • Colossus of Rhodes



Booming business in bone broth

Partnership between MADD Virgin Drinks & Niagara College, Research & Innovation

Niagara College grad puts applied research experience to work at Vineland Estates Winery

Niagara College grad now world-ready thanks to applied research projects

CFWI Research Centre at Niagara College

Research & Innovation Annual Report 2016