Nestle has unveiled plans for a medical nutrition business that will create foods to prevent and treat obesity, diabetes and Alzheimer’s.
The group, which produces popular brands such as Kit-Kat, Nescafe and Haagen-Dazs ice cream, has said it will pioneer new links between “food and pharma” with a new subsidiary called Nestle Institute of Health Sciences.
The division will work out of a research and development centre in Lausanne, Switzerland, with the company pumping millions of Swiss francs into the project over the next decade.
Nestle said the move was to help healthcare systems all over the world struggling to cope with the impact of chronic conditions such as heart disease.
Nestle chairman Peter Brabeck-Letmathe said: “The combination of health economics, changing demographics and advances in health science show that our existing healthcare systems, which focus on treating sick people, are not sustainable and need redesigning.”
He added: “Personalised health science nutrition is about finding efficient and cost effective ways to prevent and treat acute and chronic diseases in the 21st century.”
Nestle registered sales of £64.5 billion last year, and is one of the biggest producers of processed foods in the world. The health sciences subsidiary will take in the group’s current healthcare nutrition business, which registered sales of £1 billion last year.
Copyright Press Association 2010