Grasslands dominate Swiss agriculture and cover nearly 80% of the country’s agriculturally utilised area. They form the basis for ruminant livestock production through the provision of high-quality roughage which accounts for three quarters of the total dry matter of dairy cow rations, as averaged over the whole country. While permanent grasslands dominate in mountainous and less favourable regions, sown grasslands form an important part of the crop rotation (1/3) in the lowlands. Sown grasslands for intensive forage production typically consist of mixtures of 3 to 7 grass and legume species, taking advantage of increased dry matter yield through overyielding or transgressive overyielding, complementary forage quality of the different species, weed suppression and symbiotic N2 fixation. The Swiss-Standard-Mixtures System involves development and testing of species mixtures adapted to a broad range of purposes and environmental conditions. ese mixtures rely on the availability of high yielding cultivars with appropriate competitive ability and optimal forage quality. Switzerland’s forage crop breeding programme targets the improvement of the twelve prevalent forage grass and legume species including ryegrasses, fescues and clovers. Breeding research focusing on elucidating the genetic control of important traits and the development of genomics-assisted breeding tools ensures efficient breeding of improved cultivars. Continuation of the intense collaboration in research for forage plant breeding and grassland management, with involvement of all the actors, will be key to adapt sown grasslands to future challenges and demands.