Absolut vodka is Sweden’s single largest export in the food and beverage sector.
Absolut — which is made from winter wheat from the south of Sweden and water from the company’s own deep well in Åhus, Sweden — was launched in 1979, a hundred years after Lars Olsson Smith introduced its predecessor, Absolut Rent Brännvin (Absolutely Pure Vodka). The goal in 1979 was to sell Swedish vodka in the American market. It succeeded. Just a year later, 1.1 million liters of Absolut vodka were sold in the U.S. To date, more than 1 billion bottles have left the plant in Åhus.