Our Advisory Board
Prof. Dr. Thomas Brunner, Lecturer for Consumer Behaviour, HAFL
Michelle Grant, Managing Director World Food System Center, ETHZ
Patrick Zbinden, Culinary Expert
Dirk Zwanzig, Head R&D in the Food Industry
Edible insects have the potential to make your diet more diverse, sustainable and nutritious. Therefore, we establish insects as an alternative protein source with a positive impact on you, your health and our planet.
But how did it come about?
Discovering something that is new has been an important part of Essento since our beginning. The two co-founders, Christian Bärtsch and Matthias Grawehr, came across edible insects on their travels through Africa, Asia and South America.
«We were surprised about their good and varied tastes.»
In 2013, the FAO (Food and Agricultural Organization) published a report on the ecological potential and nutritional values, which insects have to offer. At that point, it was obvious for the two co-founders: Edible insects belong on Swiss plates!
Together with like-minded people and experts, we have built an interdisciplinary team. Today, we are connected and driven by the question of how food consumption can get on the right track towards supporting a healthy and sustainable society.
A strong team spirit was essential, as big challenges were lying ahead:
«Apart from building the Essento company they were engaged in developing the legal framework, which opened up the market for insects as food.»
Thanks to the public awareness and commitment, we succeeded in legalizing insects as food – a crucial milestone on our journey and for the consumption of insects in Europe.
Meanwhile, we developed our first products and put the emphasis on their taste. The Essento Burger and Balls went on sale on the 21st of August in 2017.
«Our Burger and Balls are hand-made by us in Zurich Altstetten.»
Our expectations of the acceptance of our products were surpassed. The positive feedback motivated us to develop additional products. Since November 2017 our Essento Insect Bar, a fruit bar with cricket flour, is available on the market.
Beside developing, producing and marketing our products, the education of the public about the advantages (and the great taste!) of insects is an important matter to us.
Why, how, where – answers to those and other questions are given in our workshops, cooking classes, team events, dinners and presentations – while our delicious Tenebrio (mealworm), Acheta (crickets) and Locusta (grasshoppers) are severed for the guests.
10th March 2014
Insect apero at the federal parliament building in Switzerland
Insect cookbook «Grillen, Heuschrecken & Co.» published
2nd November 2016
Insect dinner at Tropenhaus Wolhusen
16th December 2016
Insects as food legalized by the federal council in Switzerland
1st Mai 2017
Instatement of the new food law
21st August 2017
Essento Burger and Balls launched
13th November 2017
Essento Bar launched
25th June 2018
Essento Snacks launched
4th March 2019
Essento Bio Burger and Essento Bio Balls with Swiss and organic Tenebrio launched
30th April 2019
Essento Protein Insect Bar launched
18th November 2019
Essento Insect Burger launched in Germany (with Hans im Glück)