By Sacha Delfosse

SouthTrade International celebrated the tenth anniversary this month of the launch of its flagship brand, Green Fairy, which the company began to import into Australia in 2001 when a ban on absinth(e) was lifted.

STI was originally set up to distribute Green Fairy, which was the first absinth(e) to enter the Australian market, but the company now handles around 35 different brands and has grown to become the largest importer of premium alcoholic beverages in the country.

“When we brought the first bottles of absinth to the country we realized that we needed to create a category and not just a brand. We expected other absinth to follow us, and hoped it would to legitimize the category,” SouthTrade director, Tony Stubley, said.

“Now there are some twenty absinth(e)s retailed around the country, although we own Djabel, Koruna, and CZ38 ourselves and distribute Lemercier, Kubler, and Mansinthe for our partners in Absinthesalon. However you look at it we have created and continue to dominate absinth(e) in Australia.”

Green Fairy is now turning over 14,000 cases a year and according to STI the brand has become a ‘must have’ for bars and clubs that pride themselves on cocktails.

“We launched Green Fairy at the 2001 ALIA Awards (pictured above). Our whole launch budget was a couple of tickets to the awards so we had to make an impact. We’ve come a long way since turning up dressed as Green Fairies,” SouthTrade director, Dave Higgins, reminisced.

“I even won the best dressed that night. We’ve kept true to the original brand values as well as keeping a sense of fun in everything we do. It is a category that still has a long way to go.”

The Shout Team

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