Lonely Planet Writer

Visitors to Switzerland will be able to treat themselves to a BUG BURGER from this Spring

Come the end of 2016, even the most adventurous gourmand couldn’t have dreamt of topping the sale of rat burgers in a Russian restaurant  – not that the news has stopped 2017 from trying. Now plucky patty lovers will have to put Switzerland on their travel menu after one leading supermarket announced that it will start selling bug burgers as early as this spring.

A grasshopper burger with mealworms served in Washington DC restaurant. bug burger
A grasshopper burger with mealworms served in Washington DC restaurant. Image by Getty Images

The Coop supermarket, which has stores all across the country, is preparing to sell a line of insect-based goodies including burgers and meatballs. They are already working with local start-up Essento, who specialise in creating bug-based cuisine, to make the first set of products.

In a press statement, Coop spokesman Roland Frefe said: “The secret of our success is due to our capacity to identify trends and innovate.” He also hoped that the new products would allow customers to discover new flavours. The Coop added that weevils have a nutty aftertaste and crickets have a similar flavour to chicken.

Insects are seen as a healthy and sustainable meat alternative. bug burger
Insects are seen as a healthy and sustainable meat alternative. Image by Getty Images

With an increasing world population, insects are being touted a healthy and sustainable alternative to meat. Switzerland is not the first country to sell insect-based dishes either. Bugible, an events company in Los Angeles, is already serving up grasshopper tacos and scorpions.

Switzerland might not be done yet either as a new law comes into force from 1 May which will allow new products to be sold once they have met food safety regulations. Previously they needed special authorisation, so more daring cuisine could be on the way.