With over 200 food producers under one roof, and lots of delicious samples, I couldn’t resist attending the Slow Food Market in Zurich.
Defining Slow Food
As you may already know, the Slow Food movement originated across the border in Italy in 1983, led by journalist and sociologist Carlo Petrini. Slow Food is generally defined as food that’s “good, clean and fair.”
In Switzerland, the current organization, Slow Food CH, officially started in 1993. The first group of its kind started in Ticino, the Italian-speaking canton of Switzerland. According to its website, Slow Food CH has approximately 4,000 members. An individual can become a member of this organization for CHF 120 per year.
Slow Food CH has developed a list of some 300 products that have earned a special designation: Presidia. To be eligible for this distinction, these producers must “protect quality products made on a small scale using traditional practices.” Within Switzerland, over 20 products have earned the Presidia Slow Food label. You can find a number of these products at Coop, a sponsor of Slow Food CH. These products include rye bread (Pain de seigle) from Valais and a toasted corn flour (Farina bòna) from Ticino.
Slow Food Market 2015
At this year’s Slow Food market, I paid CHF 20 to get in with my Coop Supercard (general admission is CHF 24). It was a unique opportunity to talk with producers face-to-face. You have the satisfaction of purchasing products directly from the people who made them.
During the market, I strolled through the rows and rows of food vendors, and every table had something on offer to taste. I tried some fantastic balsamic vinegar. Another vendor kept handing me delicious samples of truffle butter and truffle hollandaise sauce and cheese with truffles! A major surprise for me was the pleasantly sweet chocolate truffle made with powdered durian. Overall, I took home a variety of products, including biber, black olives, hard apple cider, panettone, chocolate and curry paste.
Updated: December 29, 2022