Huge French wine and spirits multinational, second only to US multinational Diageo. The picture shows the head office in Paris. The origin of the company is the famous aniseed spirit. The basis for this is the fruit of the Badian tree, known as star anise, which is native to the border region between China and Vietnam. The essential oil (anethole) distilled from the fruit is used in the production of Pernod. One kilogram of anethole is extracted from about 100 kg of the fruit. Anethol is then mixed with a variety of herbs, such as fennel, coriander and mint, and distilled again to achieve absolute purity. Sugar, water and triple distilled alcohol are then added to the finished essence. In France, spirits distilled from various raw materials and then flavored with anise are called "anisée". Spirits produced from the base ingredient aniseed are called pastis. These are Pastis 51 (produced since 1951) and Ricard.