Our large-scale research projects in the United States and around the world are helping to develop a deeper understanding of the health impacts of dietary intake, lifestyle behaviors, and food preferences of children and adults alike.
Children's Nutrition Knowledge Leadership
The Nestlé Feeding Infants and Toddlers Study (FITS), started by Gerber in 2002, is the largest dietary intake study in the United States that examines what and how infants and toddlers eat every day. The latest findings, published in 2018, help shed light on feeding practices, nutrient shortfalls, and areas of needed dietary improvement for infants and toddlers.
The data found that nearly 20 percent of infants (6 to 12 months old) are falling short of iron in their diet, putting them at risk for sub optimal cognitive development. The study also showed that many young children do not consume a single discrete serving of either fruits, vegetables, whole grains, or dairy on a given day and miss the mark on nutrients that are important for development and overall health, including vitamin D, fiber and potassium.
Our Kids Nutrition and Health Study (KNHS), which is focused on children 4–12 years old, published three new scientific papers ranging from screen-based sedentary behavior to skipping lunch to snacking. Both FITS and KNHS are yielding important insights into children’s eating patterns and helping to define and improve our product formulations, consumer communications, educational programs and services, and partnerships.
Nutrition and Health Research
Nestlé has the world’s largest private food and nutrition research and development network in the industry— rapidly innovating conventional and medical foods, beverages, and services to meet nutrition, health, and wellness needs. We have 39 Research and Development Centers and Product Technology Centers around the world focused on developing innovative technologies and manufacturing processes that are the basis of new product development. Our 10 R&D centers across the United States are helping Nestlé respond to the growing diversity and nuances of food preferences, guiding our progress toward delivering better nutrition for current and future generations.
In 2018, we launched the newly formed Purina Institute, a new organization to help provide veterinarians with science-based, user-friend facts and information to support their nutrition-related conversation with pet owners. The goal is to help close the gap between pet owners and science-based research through veterinarians to help support their family pets.