What began as a beer trend has evolved into a beer culture based on taste, quality, innovation and design. The entrepreneurs behind these superior products often have a passion for food, beverages and sustainability.
In order for a beer to be labeled as organic, at least 95% of the ingredients must come from certified organic production. The brewery itself must also be certified. Other than water and hops, malt is the main ingredient in beer. Malt is usually made from barley, but can also be made from wheat, oats or rye depending on the type of beer. For organic beer, hops and grain cultivated without artificial fertilizer and chemical pesticides are used. The fact that Sweden has top quality drinking water also plays a central role in the production process and influences the taste and character of the beer.
The Swedish beer tradition has largely revolved around light lager beer with a slight bitterness. With the increase in craft breweries, flavoured beers such as IPA (India pale ale) and American pale ale, oak barrel-aged beer and Belgian Saison beer have become more common. This has contributed to a flourishing beer culture where there is room for a variety of different styles of beer and the emergence of new flavour combinations. Another driving force behind the development is Systembolaget, the Swedish Alcohol Monopoly, which has actively worked to bring in locally and organic beer.
Listed below are six Swedish breweries that drive the development forward by offering organic taste experiences in liquid form.
RÅÅ Organic Brewery
Thanks to its’ focus on quality and reliable delivery, the Helsingborg-based brewery, RÅÅ Organic Brewery, has created a name for itself in the Swedish beverage market. The entire selection, brewed from organic ingredients, offers a taste palette inspired by both the European and American beer traditions. Over a short period of time the brewery has developed an assortment of lager, IPA and pale ale to name a few of its’ varieties. Råå Organic Brewery’s beer bottles stand out on store shelves thanks to their straight-forward design that expresses both innovative thinking and Scandinavian simplicity.
The award-winning brewery, Klackabacken, outside of Kristianstad in southern Sweden began as a hobby project in 2012, but after only a few years grew significantly in popularity and currently supplies both Systembolaget and restaurants and bars throughout Sweden. The brewery has developed a reputation for combining creativity with traditional know-how. The result is a tasteful, organic, contemporary craft beer that suits the discerning consumer.
For over 10 years the craft brewery Dugges on the west coast of Sweden has been recognised for its’ distinctive style and for a few years has been exporting their beer to both the United States and China. Focus on quality, taste and creativity are considered to be a few of the many reasons behind their export successes. Dugges’ selection includes several beers that are brewed using organic ingredients.
Stockholm Brewing Company
Stockholm Brewing Company is located in Södermalm, a trendy area of Stockholm, but the brewery is well-known in beer circles far beyond Sweden’s borders. The brewery has been organically certified since 2013. As well, they try to use as much local produce as possible such as elderflower from parks in Södermalm and rhubarb from the organic garden Rosendal. In addition to their core range of balanced beers, they occasionally brew limited quantities with more daring and innovative tastes.
Sigtuna Brewery started just like many other breweries as a hobby project, but in recent years it has grown and become one of the larger Swedish craft breweries. The brewery, inspired by American craft beer from New York and San Diego, has won numerous awards at the Stockholm Beer & Whiskey Festival. As part of their sustainability program, the brewery power their facilities using only renewable energy sources and the by-products from the production are converted into biogas. At present there are three organic beers in the Sigtuna Brewery selection.
Brygghuset Finn, in Landskrona in southern Sweden, has since its’ start in 2010 brewed craft beer on a small scale. Inspired by American, German and Czech beer traditions, they have developed a selection of beers that suits most tastes.