Our Approach to Research

Nestle's Worldwide Research & Development network

With 24 research technology centers worldwide, Nestlé has the largest food research and development network of any food company. The Nestlé Research Center, based near Lausanne, Switzerland, is the world’s largest private facility for nutrition-related research. Fremont, Michigan is home to the NDC Fremont (Nestlé Development Center) and is the global center of excellence for all Nestlé baby food, meals, and drinks.

Nestlé’s Worldwide Research & Development network provides three fundamental areas of benefits for parents: safety and quality; nutrition and health; and taste, texture, and convenience.

How Research Benefits Your Children 

Nestlé and Gerber have helped achieve many nutrition breakthroughs. In 2007, Nestlé introduced the first infant formula in the United States with probiotics—beneficial B. Lactis cultures similar to the type found in breastmilk—designed to help support baby’s healthy immune system and digestive health. We also reformulated our meals & snacks for toddlers by reducing trans fats, reducing the sodium content, and using healthier fat sources.

Does Baby like it?

We use tiny taste testers from our panel of 2,000 babies to let us know. Because no matter how nutritious our baby food is, it needs to taste good! Carefully watching our little taste-testers also helps us to understand how we can improve our products to be appropriate for young children’s stages of eating development.

“Research is a key part of our heritage and an essential element for our future. We know there’s still lots to discover about the role of food in our lives, and we continue to search for answers that deliver Nestlé’s promise of Good Food, Good Life™.”


Ashley Lewis, Lead Researcher

Feeding Infants and Toddlers Study (FITS)

Nestlé and Gerber are committed to improving infant and child nutrition through innovation backed by solid research. One of the most notable research efforts is the Feeding Infants and Toddlers Study (FITS), an ongoing initiative for the past 17 years to better understand young children's diets and related behaviors. Nearly 10,000 parents and caregivers have been surveyed across three studies in the U.S., with more than 50 peer-reviewed publications to date.


The FITS 2002 Study

FITS 2002 was the first undertaking of its size and revealed interesting facts about what infants and toddlers were really eating. Several key issues were brought to light —notably that many toddlers failed to get adequate amounts of several important nutrients, including vitamin E, calcium, potassium, and dietary fiber. In addition, it revealed that many infants and toddlers weren’t eating a discrete portion of fruit or vegetable serving on a given day.