Health food shopping in Switzerland
Switzerland may be famous for cheese and chocolate, yet healthy eating is a great concern for many Swiss consumers. Here is Expatica's guide to buying health foods in Switzerland.
Switzerland is a health- and environment-conscious nation. In 2005, the Swiss spent CHF 160 per head on organic produce, in particular vegetables, fruit and eggs, and 11 percent of all Swiss farms had been awarded the organic symbol: a white bud in a green circle. Switzerland has the highest proportion of usable land given over to organic farming in Europe (together with Austria).
Hormones and adding antibiotics to animal feed are both forbidden, and all food containing genetically modified ingredients must be labelled as such, with the words ‘genetically modified’ written in full on the packaging. In 1992, Switzerland became the first country in the world to ban battery farming.
So where can you buy all this produce?
There are plenty of health food shops in Switzerland, which sell a wide range of organic cereals, fresh bread, fruit and vegetables, as well as fresh tofu products. Migros and Coop, the two biggest Swiss supermarket chains, nowadays also sell tofu, multi-vitamin fruit juices and organic cereals, flour, rice, dried raisins, sprouts and vegetables. Prices are slightly lower than in health food shops and quality is high.
Perhaps the most enjoyable way to shop for healthy food, though, is to visit one (or many!) of Switzerland’s ubiquitous fresh food markets. Most towns and villages have a weekly market selling local, seasonal farm produce, fresh fruit and vegetables and organic foods, as well as flowers. Larger annual markets and festivals also take place from May through November.
Read on for a selection of health food shops (including online shops) in Geneva and Zurich, plus regular outdoor markets in Geneva, Vaud, Ain, Haute-Savoie and Zurich.
Health food shops in Switzerland
Au Fournil de la Ferme
4 Chemin de l'Auberge, 1213 Onex
Tel: +41 (0)22 793 14 15
Shop selling organic and natural products including cosmetics.
3 Route de Meyrin, 1202 Geneva
Tel: +41 (0)22 733 86 74
Health food store selling organic foods and products.
7 Rue Neuve, 1260 Nyon
Tel: +41 (0)22 990 03 70
Organic, bio and natural products.
Grain de Vie
9 Chemin sur Rang, 1234 Pinchat
Tel: +41 (0)22 343 54 90
Organic produce and health food store. Open Monday to Saturday from 09.00–12.30 and 14.00–19.00. Closed Saturday afternoons. Online shopping available.
80 Route de Chene, Chene-Bougeries
Tel: +41 (0)22 700 05 30
Organic food restaurant with its own grocery shop next door selling organic food, bread, juices and more.
Tel: +41 (0)79 509 07 25
Delivery service of ingredients and cooking instructions for balanced, healthy family dinners. Most products from local organic farmers.
Le Maraicher Bio
7 Avenue Mirany, 1225 Chene-Bourg
Tel: +41 (0)22 860 06 53
Organic fruit, vegetables, baby foods, cereals, jam, biscuits, drinks, pastas, sauces, coffee and dairy products.
Le Relais de la Nature
10 Place de l'Octroi, 1227 Carouge
Tel: +41 (0)22 342 96 21
Organic, bio and natural products including fruit and vegetables.
31 Rue Voltaire, 01210 Ferney-Voltaire
Tel: +33 (0)4 50 40 78 62
Natural and organic produce supermarket, selling bread, fruit and vegetables, fresh products, cereal, baby products and oils. Online shop.
The Honey Man
1279 Chavannes de Bogis
Contact: Paul Foley
Tel: +41 (0)79 788 3312
British bee keeper producing organic honey with a low carbon foot print, candles and lip balms from his hives in the local nature reserve.
31 Grand Rue, 1180 Rolle
Tel: +41 (0)21 826 14 06
Organic and health food.
Birmensdorferstrasse 143, 8003 Zürich
Tel: 043 811 54 90
Multicultural indoor food market.
Metallstrasse 9a, 630 Zurich
Contact: G. Jellinghaus
Tel: 041 544 20 43
Organic supermarket selling vegetables, fruit, dairy and soy products, soft drinks, bread, noodles and natural cosmetics. Open Monday to Wednesday and Friday 09.00–19.00, Thursday 09.00–21.00, Saturday 09.00–17.00.
Lauterbackstrasse 11, 4665 Oftringen
Tel: 062 721 62 34
Organic food, fruits, vegetables and more, with home delivery. Founded by five bio-farmers, with locations across Swiss-German Switzerland.
Baerenplatz 2, 3011 Bern
Website listing stores that sell organic products, organised by canton.
Buonaserstrasse 2, 6343 Rotkreuz
Tel: 041 790 12 20
Homemade beef, turkey and fish specialities. Also sells olive oil, balsamic vinegar, wines and gift baskets. Catering service. Open Monday to Friday 06.00–18.30, Saturday 06.00–16.00.
Rennweg 53, 8001 Zurich
Tel: 044 211 52 58
Native Zurich coffee shop, famous for its homemade birchermuesli. Open Monday to Friday 07.30–18.30, Saturday 07.30–17.00.
Badenerstr. 9, 8004 Zürich
Tel: +41 (0)44 242 40 13
Health food chain with stores throughout Zurich, offering organic food, organic wine, gluten free products, macrobiotic products, fresh fruit and vegetables, organic baby food, as well as , natural cosmetics. All open Monday to Saturday and some on Sunday, with varying opening hours.
Stadelhoferstrasse 22, 8008 Zurich
Tel: 044 260 71 71
Local as well as exotic produce, and dried fruits and vegetables, delivered daily. Open Monday to Saturday during normal store times.
Margarethenstrasse 87, 4053 Basel
Tel: 061 385 96 10
Bio Suisse guide to farm shops offering direct sale of organic products, listed by canton.
Shopville, Bahnhofpassage, 8000 Zurich (main location)
Tel: 044 2225 40 00
Fresh vegetables, fruit, dairy and bakery products sold in six locations in Zurich. Delivery service. Open Monday to Friday 08.00–12.00 and 13.00–17.30.
Muller Reformhaus Vital Shop AG
Renweg 15, 8001 Zurich
Part of a large natural food and supplement store chain in German-speaking Switzerland with over 20 stores. All open Monday to Saturday with varying opening hours.
Tel: 044 776 86 03
Strawberries, cherries and prunes can be picked (in season) at this family farm business, as well as regional products bought in the farm shop.
Münstergasse 19, 8001 Zürich
Tel: 044 261 13 15
Coffee, tea, spices, honey, rice, dried legumes, dried fruits and nuts. Open Tuesday to Friday 08.00–18.30, Saturday 09.00–17:00.
Outdoor markets in Switzerland
Rue du Grand Pré, Geneva
Fruit and vegetable market. Mondays and Thursdays 06.30–13.00.
Rue Liotard, Geneva
Local market selling fruit, vegetables and manufactured goods. Mondays and Thursdays 06.30–13.00.
Ecole du Petit-Lancy, Geneva
Local market selling fruit and vegetables. Mondays and Thursdays 06.00–14.00.
Place des Aviateurs, Plan-les-Ouates
General produce market. Mondays and Thursdays 07.30–13.00.
Place du Pré l'Evêque, Geneva
Fruit and vegetable market. Mondays 08.00–13.00.
Place Carantec, Le Grand-Saconnex
General produce market. Tuesdays 07.00–13.00.
Place des Cinq-Continents, Meyrin
General produce market. Tuesdays and Wednesdays 06.30–13.00 and Fridays 14.30–18.45.
Place de la Navigation, Geneva
Market selling fruit, vegetables and manufactured goods. Tuesdays and Fridays 06.30–13.00.
Plaine de Plainpalais, Geneva
Local market for fruit, vegetables and manufactured goods. Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays 06.30–13.00.
Fruit and vegetable market. Tuesdays and Thursday 08.00–13.00.
Place du Marché, Carouge
General produce market. Wednesdays and Saturdays 06.30–14.00.
Place de la Fusterie, Geneva
Fruit and vegetable market. Wednesdays 08.00–18.00 and Saturdays 06.30–18.00.
Boulevard Helvétique, Geneva
Local market selling fruit, vegetables and manufactured goods. Wednesdays 06.30–13.00 and Saturdays 06.30–13.45.
27 Avenue des Grandes-Communes, Onex
General produce market. Wednesdays and Saturdays 08.00–13.00.
Avenue de Champel, Geneva
Fruit and vegetable market. Thursdays 06.30–13:00.
Geneva Organic Market
Avenue De-Gallatin/Chemin François-Furet, Geneva
Organic food market selling fruit, vegetables, cheese, meat, wine and bread. Thursdays 16.00–20.30.
30 Rue Gaudy-le-Fort, Onex
Weekly market for fruit and vegetables.
Weekly market for fruit and vegetables, fish and cheese. Thursday mornings.
Place du Bourg, Versoix
Weekly market for dairy products, fruit and vegetables. Thursdays 07.30–13.00.
Place Colonel-Audéoud, Chênes-Bougeries
General produce market. Fridays 08.00–14.00.
General market in the centre of the village. Fridays from 13.30 onwards.
Place du 1er Août, Grand-Lancy
Fruit and vegetable market. Fridays 06.00–13.00.
Place du Grenus, Geneva
Fruit and vegetable market. Saturdays 06.30–13.30.
Place de l'Eglise, Veyrier
General market. Mornings.
Boulevard de Grancy, Lausanne
Local market for fruit and vegetables. Mondays 08.00–13.00.
Place du Marché, Vevey
Large market with fruits, vegetables and local and exotic products. Tuesdays until 13.00 and Saturdays until 13.30.
Promenade Auguste-Fallet, Yverdon-les-Bains
General market selling fruit, vegetables, meat, bread and mushrooms. Tuesdays and Saturdays 08.00–12.00.
Place de la Riponne, Lausanne
Local market selling fruit, vegetables and manufactured goods. Wednesdays and Saturdays 08.00–14.30.
Grand Rue, Morges
Traditional market selling fruit, vegetables, local products, meat, cheese, chocolate, crafts and flowers. Wednesday and Saturday mornings.
Town centre, Nyon
Market selling fresh fruit and vegetables, eggs and honey. Wednesdays and Saturdays 08.00–13.00.
Boulevard de Grancy, Lausanne
Local market for fruit and vegetables. Thursdays 08.00–13.00.
Marché du BAP
Administratif de la Pontaise, 2 Avenue des Casernes, Lausanne
Fruit, vegetable and cheese market at the Bâtiment. Fridays 08.00–13.00.
Town centre, Montreux
Market for fruit and vegetables. Friday mornings.
Avenue Voltaire/Grand'Rue, Ferney-Voltaire
Small general produce and clothes market. Wednesday and Saturday mornings.
Town centre, Bellegarde-sur-Valserine
Market for general produce. Thursdays 07.00–14.00.
Salle des Fêtes car park, Divonne-les-Bains
Fruit and vegetable market. Fridays 08.00–12.30.
Rue des Terreaux, Gex
General market. Saturdays 07.30–12.30.
Town centre, Divonne-les-Bains
Market for general and regional produce in the town centre. Sunday mornings.
Saint Genis Pouilly
Car park between the Mediathèque and the Centre Culturel Jean Monnet, Saint Genis Pouilly
Small market selling fruit and vegetables. Sunday mornings
Rue de la Mairie, Thoiry
Fruit and vegetable market. Sundays 07.00–14.00.
Town centre, Thonon-les-Bains
General market for fruit and vegetables in. Monday and Thursday mornings.
Various locations, Annecy
General market for fruit and vegetables. Tuesdays (in the old town and on Place des Romains), Thursdays (in Quartier de Novel), Fridays (in the old town) and Saturdays (Boulevard Taine and Boulevard Nicollet) and Sundays (in the old town) 07.00–13.00.
Place de la Libération, Annemasse
Local market for fruit and vegetables. Tuesday and Friday mornings.
Place du Tilleul, Vetraz-Monthoux
Small market for fruit and vegetables at. Thursday mornings.
Town centre, Ambilly
Small general market. Saturday mornings.
Town centre, Gaillard
General market for fruit, vegetables and local food products in the. Saturday mornings.
Town centre, Collonges-sous-Saleve
General market. Sundays 07.30–14.00.
Town centre, Ville-la-Grand
General market for fruit and vegetables. Sunday mornings.
Twice-weekly market offering fresh vegetables, regional specialities, organic produce and fresh mushrooms, as well as flowers and potted plants. Tuesdays and Fridays 8.00–11.00.
Traditional food and flower market. Saturdays 06.00–12.00.
Traditional international grocery market. Home-grown and exotic produce. Tuesdays and Fridays 08.00–11.00.
A wide range of fresh vegetables, fruit, fish, flowers and more.
Am Marktplatz, Zurich
Flower and vegetable market offering breads, delicious ‘Zopf’ (a plaited Swiss white bread), freshly caught fish, cheeses, pasta, fresh mushrooms, herbs and spices, as well as vegetables and fruit directly from the producer. Wednesdays 06.00–11.00 and Saturdays 06.00–12.00.
Weekly flower and vegetable market; the locals call the Rathausbrücke the ‘Gemüsebrücke’ (Vegetable Bridge). Saturdays 8.00–12.00.
Zurich Main Station
Speciality goods from vendors all over Switzerland: air-dried Grisons beef, high-quality cheeses, organic vegetables, chocolate, fruit, whole-grain baker's specialties and delicious bread from Poschiavo among others. Wednesdays 10.00–20.00.
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