By making food tastier and healthier, more balanced and easier to prepare, we believe that we can inspire people to lead healthier lives.
Nestlé’s commitment to healthier eating includes helping to address issues such as micronutrient deficiencies and improving nutritional understanding. For example:
Maggi and micronutrient fortification
While global nutrition has improved over the last 50 years, the problem of under-nutrition continues to exist. Micronutrient deficiencies affect more than one-third of the world’s population. The most common instances of micronutrient deficiencies concern:
- iron - needed for physical and mental development and physical performance
- iodine - for cognitive development
- vitamin A - essential for sight and immunity
- zinc - for growth and immunity
Even moderate levels of micronutrient malnutrition can have adverse effects on health.
Eating a well-balanced diet can be difficult for people in developing countries due to food supply and affordability. Fortification of food and beverages therefore, offers an easy and cost-effective solution.
Working with local governments and international health authorities, Nestlé identifies the most prevalent nutritional gaps in each developing country where we operate and improves the nutritional profile of our products to meet the needs of local consumers. For example, iodine is the most widespread deficient micronutrient in the world affecting 2 billion people.
Nestlé takes a tailored approach, offering iodine-enriched products that are relevant and affordable for local consumers.
- Nestlé sold 600 000 tonnes of iodine-enriched Maggi products (bouillons, seasonings and noodles) in 2009.
- 19 billion Maggi cubes using iodised salt are sold annually in Central West Africa alone.
- In India, we launched a Maggi seasoning fortified with iron, vitamin A and iodine, as well as a Maggi noodle fortified with iron and iodine.
- In Vietnam, we launched a Maggi rice topping fortified with iodine and iron.
- In Turkey, Maggi introduced a dispensing machine in corner stores, allowing consumers to buy seasoning fortified with iodine and iron at a lower price point.
Maggi programmes improve nutritional understanding
Maggi has long been active in helping consumers improve their nutritional understanding towards healthier, balanced eating. A good example is La Escuelita Maggi (Little Maggi School) launched in the Dominican Republic in 1991.
The main objective of the programme is to give children aged 7-13 their first nutrition and culinary experience, learning about good eating habits in a fun and interactive environment. Around 40 children, with their teachers, visit the Maggi School each day with more than 6 000 visitors a year.
Each visit to La Escuelita includes a nutrition lecture, where the children learn about healthy eating using the nutritional pyramid. They make a trip to a mini market, where the chef gives the children guidance in choosing healthy ingredients. The children then select the ingredients to prepare the meal of the day. The children are also taught hygiene principles, such as how to wash their hands, clean and prepare the food.
Since the launch of La Escuelita Maggi more than 102 000 children have benefited - often sharing the learning at home to improve their own family’s eating habits.