One-sixth of the Swiss household budget is spent on food (and drink), split almost equally between the home and the outside world. Breakfast, lunch and dinner, especially in the cities and towns, is an event that takes people into cafes and restaurants, and into places where their favourite food is readily available. At first glance that might seem like breads, cakes, confections and pastries of all descriptions, cheese in various formats, meats served in aromatic sauces and potatoes prepared with ingenuity and style, raw food of all kinds. The Swiss love their food, that there is no doubt, but don’t make the assumption that it fits neatly into any of the European culinary categories. Swiss food is unique, more an influence to than an influence from, a consequence of the unique climate and diverse geography.


If it needed to, Switzerland could be self-sufficient in food and, to those in the surrounding European countries where food security is once again becoming an issue of concern, a model in sustainable food systems, to the extent that value-added produce and the consequent social impact is taken by many for granted.

Unlike many of its neighbours, who have allowed their food traditions to be compromised by the fast food industry, Switzerland has clung defiantly to its associations and guilds, with the result that the food artisan and the food producer is a cherised member of society. Standards, as you would expect, are exceptionally high. The customer benefits, so much that the food, whether it is sold in a shop or supermarket, served in a cafe or restaurant, is second to none.


The Swiss take pride in their food products, of which many are protected by geographical indicator status, vis:

Abricotine / Eau-de-vie d’abricot du Valais


Basler Läckerli

Berner Alpkäse / Berner Hobelkäse





Bündnerfleisch (Graubünden Air-Dried Meat)

Cardon épineux genevois

Cervelas / Cervelat




Eau-de-vie de poire du Valais


Fondue (melted cheese – with cantonal variations)

Formaggio d’alpe ticinese


Geneva Cardon épineux

Geneva Longeole (sausages)

Geneva Pork Fricasse





Liechtensteiner Sauerkäse und Bloderkäse

Munder Safran


Munder Safran (saffron)

Nüsslisalat / Rampons


Poire à Botzi

Rheintaler Ribel


Rösti (grated potatoes – with cantonal variations)

Saucisse d’Ajoie

Saucisson Neuchâtelois / Saucisse Neuchâteloise

Saucisson Vaudois

Saucisse aux choux Vaudoise


St. Galler Bratwurst / St. Galler Kalbsbratwurst

Tête de Moine, Fromage de Bellelay

Ticino Formaggio d’alpe

Vacherin Fribourgeois

Vacherin Mont-d’Or

Walliser Trockenfleisch

Wallis / Valais Trockenfleisch (air-dried meat)

Valais / Walliser RacletteRacletteduValais-lowres

Walliser Roggenbrot / Pain de Seigle Valaisan (Valais / Wallis rye bread)

Werdenberger Sauerkäse



Basel featuring honey biscuits
Brig 1 featuring Gomer cholera at Hotel Ambassador 


Brigfeaturing The Hotelier of Brig
Geneva 1 featuring hot chicken on Rousseau’s Island
Geneva 2 featuring a hot sandwich on a TGV
Kandersteg featuring summer sausages
Lac Léman featuring fish stew 
St. Gallen featuring veal sausages
Switzerland featuring Swiss breads


Valais/Wallis 1 featuring green salad 
Valais/Wallis 2 featuring pears  
Valais/Wallis 3 featuring apples
Vevey 1 featuring A Visit to Vevey 
Veveyfeaturing Charlie Chaplin
Zürich featuring sugar buns
Zweisimmen featuring barley soup

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