Most vegan canton in Switzerland revealed

Most vegan canton in Switzerland revealed

As vegan and vegetarian restaurants and products continue to spread far and wide, a new report from Coop has revealed the canton that has taken the veggie lifestyle most to heart. The supermarket found that while vegan products are yet to catch on everywhere, German-speaking Switzerland has seen the most rapid change.

Vegan substitutes becoming more accepted in Switzerland

Using a survey and data from its Supercard membership system, Coop was able to determine which regions of the alpine nation have seen the biggest shift towards vegan and vegetarian products. The company noted that while six in 10 people in Switzerland ate meat several times a week in 2023, this amounts to a 3 percentage point decline compared to 2022.

28 percent said that they often use substitutes - meaning they are not entirely vegan, but do consume “plant-based substitute products that imitate the animal-based original several times a month.” A further 28 percent reported that they have tried a substitute product “from time to time”, while the number of people who said they have never tried a vegan substitute fell by 5 percent. Young people and women are the most likely groups to regularly eat vegan products.

Majority bought vegan products for environmental reasons

Of those who have tried a vegan substitute, 63 percent said that they bought the item for environmental reasons. 51 percent said health was one of the main drivers of eating vegan, followed by 50 percent who said animal welfare was one of the top concerns.

However, there is evidence to suggest that people may be starting to veer away from vegan products that seek to replace meat. Coop noted that sales of meat-alternative products fell by 1,5 percent in 2023 - 20 Minuten noted that Swiss supermarkets are now planning to create half meat, half vegan products that provide some of the environmental benefits of vegan substitutes, while offering similar flavours to a meat-based product.

Canton Zurich buys the most vegan products in Switzerland

In all, Canton Zurich was found to purchase the most vegan products overall, being far above the average for Switzerland in 2023. The city of Zurich took the top spot for the most vegan meat, milk and yoghurt alternatives sold, while Basel bought the most vegan cheese.

Indeed, the report found that German-speaking Switzerland is the most vegan-minded region, will all but one (Fribourg) of the top 15 most vegan cities being east of the Röstigraben. Coop added that four German-speaking cantons were the only areas that saw the popularity of vegan meat increase, namely Appenzell Ausserrhoden, Schaffhausen, Thurgau and Uri. On the flip side, the least vegan canton in Switzerland was Jura, followed by Neuchâtel, Valais and Uri. 

Thumb image credit: dosmass /

Jan de Boer


Jan de Boer

Editor for Switzerland at IamExpat Media. Jan studied History at the University of York and Broadcast Journalism at the University of Sheffield. Though born in York, Jan has lived most...

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