In 1866, Henri Nestlé founded Nestlé on the success of an infant cereal that saved the life of a neighbor’s child. This innovation set a precedent to apply scientific discovery and new technologies to improve the food value chain. Today, Nestlé is the largest privately funded nutrition research organization in the world, investing more than one billion dollars in research and development annually. As we celebrate our 150th anniversary, we look back on critical scientific milestones throughout the company’s history.
Some of Nestlé’s notable nutrition science endeavors include:
- In 1927, Gerber® was established and made the first canned baby food sold in grocery stores.
- Purina® Dog Chow®, the first pet food made in distinct kibble shapes, launched in 1957.
- In 1974, OPTIFAST® pioneered the medical weight management approach, later becoming a well-documented program cited in more than 80 studies.
- In 2012, Nestlé introduced nutrient-fortified products to address global micronutrient deficiencies, including Maggi® brand seasonings with iron and Nestlé Pure Life® with zinc.
- Today, more than 5,000 people from 50 countries make up Nestlé’s integrated network of research, development and product testing centers.
As Nestlé looks forward to the next 150 years, our passion for nutrition science continues to inspire our efforts to enhance the quality of life every day and at every stage of life for our consumers, pets, and their families.
See the Full Timeline