By Duncan Mackay

Red sunglasses CanadaMay 7 - Canada hopes that it has come up with another fundraising winner after announcing that its red sunglasses are to go on sale at Hudson's Bay stores across the country.

The Canadian Olympic Foundation is hoping to match the success of the tremendously popular red mittens campaign, which proved such a huge hit at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. 

One third of the proceeds from each pair of sunglasses sold will go directly to supporting high performance sport and athletes in Canada.

What officials hope will become an iconic summer item will retail for $10 (£6.50/€7.50) and is available in three different colours - red, white and black.

More than 3.5 million pairs of the red mittens, with a white maple leaf on the palm, were sold, helping raise over $14 million (£10 million/€11 million) towards helping fund Canadian athletes as they finished top of the overall medals table at Vancouver 2010 with a total of 26 medals, 14 of them gold.

They hope to retain their position at top of the medals table at Sochi 2014. 

Red Mittens Vancouver 2010More than 3.5 million pairs of red mittens were sold as part of Vancouver 2010

"There is a growing sense in this country that our athletes matter and that they deserve to be supported," said Marcel Aubut, President of the Canadian Olympic Committee and chairman of the Canadian Olympic Foundation.

"The 2010 Vancouver Olympic Games fundamentally changed Canada's relationship with our athletes, and I know that Canadians will respond positively to this campaign.

"Our nation is ready for more great Olympic magic and what a wonderful way for Canadians to play a part in making that a reality."

Since 2006, Hudson's Bay has donated more than $35 million (£23 million/€27 million) to support Canadian athletes through the Canadian Olympic Foundation and other national sports organisations and initiatives.

"Our athletes are truly fortunate to have such a devoted partner in sport," said Adam Van Koeverden, chair of the COC Athletes' Commission.

"It is because of partnerships and initiatives such as these that our athletes and National Sports Federations continue to be able to excel and deliver results during international competition.

"It is my hope that Canadians will embrace this opportunity to assist our deserving athletes who are aspiring to write our country's next great Olympic moments."

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