Overview of salt fluoridation in Switzerland since 1955, a short history

Schweiz Monatsschr Zahnmed. 2005;115(8):651-5.


After an early start in 1955, the introduction and acceptance of fluoridated salt (FS) for domestic use was slow in Switzerland because up to around 1980 there was no consistent strategy for the support of the use of FS. Part of the dental community still supported water fluoridation, while others criticized the insufficient concentration of fluoride in the salt (90 ppm). All Swiss cantons have a historical monopoly on salt trade, and until 1983 most cantonal governments resolved to authorize the sale of fluoridated domestic salt. Some of the cantonal governments made fluoridated salt the only available type of "kitchen salt" in 1-kg packages. After the concentration had been increased to 250 ppm in 1983, the use of FS gained further acceptance. A temporary setback occurred in 1992-1994, but was successfully met with by making the FS available in several package sizes, while other types of salt (with or without iodine) were available in 500 g packages only. By 2004, the market share of fluoridated domestic salt reached 88%. Further endeavours aim at increasing the use of FS by large kitchens. FS is available in portions of 12.5 kg (since 2001) and 25 kg (since 1976).

Publication types

  • Historical Article
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cariostatic Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Cariostatic Agents / history
  • Dental Caries / history
  • Dental Caries / prevention & control*
  • Fluorides / administration & dosage*
  • History, 20th Century
  • Humans
  • Sodium Chloride, Dietary / administration & dosage*
  • Sodium Chloride, Dietary / history
  • State Government
  • Switzerland


  • Cariostatic Agents
  • Sodium Chloride, Dietary
  • Fluorides