Born in Zurich, Eric Gutknecht came to the US with his parents when he was a little boy. Today he runs a sausage factory in Colorado.
Gutknecht did two charcuterie-making apprenticeships in Switzerland. His professional experience includes teaching economics and working as a business analyst. In 2003, he and his wife, Jessica, took over the family sausage businessexternal link in Denver.
Today, CharcūtNuvo provides grocery stores and Swiss clubs all over the United States with traditional Swiss-style Bratwursts as well as more unusual varieties, like chicken-spinach and mac-n-cheese. The factory uses European production techniques and even some Swiss equipment.
“We try to get our supplies from within a 500-mile radius,” says Gutknecht, adding that the meat, which comes from smaller farms, is not treated with antibiotics or hormones. “The challenge is getting it fresh. Sometimes we have to buy frozen.” The award-winning company has also launched an organic line.
“I miss Swiss things like Ragusa and Rivella,” says Gutknecht, who hasn’t lived in Switzerland since his apprenticeship time. He has a 17-year-old son and a 15-year-old daughter, so there is some chance of passing on the family business.