Finlandia Vodka Celebrates 40th Anniversary

First premium imported vodka in the United States

Jan 27, 2010, 12:48 ET from Finlandia Vodka

LOUISVILLE, Ky., Jan. 27 /PRNewswire/ -- Forty years ago, from a land of unsurpassed purity, Finlandia Vodka® was born and brought to the United States as the first imported premium vodka.

"Although, we can trace our roots back to 1888 with the founding of the original distillery by Dr. Juslin Wilhelm in the small Finnish village of Rajamaki, Finlandia Vodka was officially first imported into the United States in 1970," said Maureen Brekka, managing director for Finlandia Vodka. "The tradition of Finlandia Vodka and its production tradition is such an important part of Finnish history and culture that today, some of the original distillery buildings in Rajamaki are protected as part of the national heritage."

Dr. Wilhelm could not fathom how large his creation would become. Today, Finlandia Vodka has grown into the 2nd largest premium vodka brand in Europe and 5th largest premium vodka brand globally, selling more than three million cases annually and available in more than 130 countries worldwide.

The secret to Finlandia's success is its pure ingredients and the highest possible production standards. Finlandia Vodka is crafted from entirely natural ingredients including pure glacial spring water and the finest six-row barley, grown under the long days and white nights of the Finnish Midnight Sun. Then, we use a highly energy efficient distillation process to reduce our environmental impact while delivering unsurpassed quality.

"As a Finnish brand, we combined our respect for nature with our knowledge of spirits to create a process that not only produces the world's finest vodka but considers its environmental footprint," Brekka said.

Another part of Finlandia's heritage and its 40 years of history is its iconic bottle. The bottle has always embodied the clarity and freshness of the vodka inside, as well as embraced the spirit of the arctic country from which it came. Sculptor Tapio Wirkkala created the first bottle. The design of the Finlandia bottle was among his most famous designs inspired by his fascination with ice. The design had similar elements of Wirkkala's famous collection of Iittala glassware Ultima Thule, course icy edged glassware inspired by the elements of his native Finland. Through the bottle's evolution, Finlandia remains grounded in the same the principles of natural purity as it did 40 years ago.

"The current bottle, introduced in 2003, was created in cooperation with world renowned Finnish designer, Harri Koskinen," said Tomas Manasek, director of global marketing for Finlandia. "Our current bottle, with its clean simple lines and dimples that appear as though nature itself sculpted the bottle from melting ice, pays homage to the people of Finland and their sensibilities." Finlandia remains committed to maintaining our strong connection to Finnish design.

To celebrate its 40th Anniversary, Finlandia Vodka is offering special gift packages throughout the year and holding anniversary celebrations to commemorate its introduction into the United States.

"The past 40 years have been tremendous for Finlandia Vodka, and we look forward to celebrating our next 40 years in 2050," Brekka said.

For more information, please contact David Page at 001-502-774-7701, or

About Finlandia Vodka

Finlandia Vodka is a product with a global reputation for its unique Nordic heritage. Finlandia's unparalleled quality can be attributed to only the finest ingredients: pure glacial spring water, a legacy of the Ice Age, and six-row barley, which offers the highest quality starch and the lowest possible content of natural oils, delivering a crisp, clean taste.

Finlandia Vodka was one of the first premium vodkas to introduce flavors from nature in 1994 with the launch of Cranberry Fusion. Since then, Finlandia has introduced more fresh tasting flavors to the portfolio: Finlandia Lime Fusion (1999), Finlandia Mango Fusion (2004), Finlandia Redberry Fusion (2004), Finlandia Grapefruit Fusion (2007), Finlandia Tangerine Fusion (2009), Finlandia Blackcurrant Fusion (2009)

Finlandia Vodka Worldwide Ltd (FVW) is a joint partnership owned 100 percent by Brown-Forman Corporation. FVW is responsible for the Finlandia trademark and marketing and distribution assets. Brown-Forman handles all global marketing activities for the Finlandia Vodka brand. For more information about Finlandia Vodka, please visit

About Brown Forman

Brown-Forman Corporation (NYSE: BF-B) is a producer and marketer of fine quality beverage alcohol brands, including Jack Daniel's, Southern Comfort, Finlandia, Canadian Mist, Fetzer, Korbel, Gentleman Jack, el Jimador, Tequila Herradura, Sonoma-Cutrer, Chambord, Tuaca, Woodford Reserve, and Bonterra. We globally market and sell various categories of beverage alcohol products, such as Tennessee, Canadian, and Kentucky whiskies; Kentucky bourbons; California sparkling wine; tequila; table wine; liqueurs; vodka; rum; and ready-to-drink products. For more information about Brown-Forman and our brands, please visit our website at

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Finlandia Vodka Worldwide Ltd., Helsinki, Finland. Finlandia Vodkas, 40% Alc./Vol. Imported by Brown-Forman Beverages, Louisville, Kentucky USA

SOURCE Finlandia Vodka