Army pledges to serve Swiss food only to troops

Responding to concerns from animal rights activists, the Swiss Army has pledged to obtain 100 percent of the food served to its troops from Switzerland.

Army pledges to serve Swiss food only to troops
Photo: Federal department of defence

The Swiss animal protection association (STS) complained that the army was serving meat coming from countries that fail to respect Swiss standards for raising animals.

The army decided to change its policy after articles appeared in the Swiss media about proposed use of Hungarian rabbit meat, as a cost-saving measure, the SDA news agency reported on Monday.

The department of defence has set a daily budget of 8 francs and 50 cents ($9) for feeding each soldier in the largely conscript force, SDA said.

Help from the STS allowed the army to find a solution with Swiss breeders and farmers, army spokesman Daniel Reist told SDA, confirming reports appearing in several Sunday newspapers.

“All the food served will come exclusively from Swiss breeders and producers,” Reist is quoted as saying.

The army will serve fish products that are certified for being “respectful to the dignity of animals”.

The cost of the change in policy will add around 1.5 million francs to the army’s current annual budget of 63 million for feeding the troops, SDA said.  

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