Can Nestlé Cure Our Sugar High?

The com­pany that in­vented the Crunch bar wants to be a health gi­ant

Bloomberg Businessweek (Asia) - - FRONT PAGE - By Matthew Camp­bell and Corinne Gretler

Nestlé is by far the largest food com­pany in the world. Its 335,000 em­ploy­ees pro­duce more than 2,000 brands, man­u­fac­tured in 436 fac­to­ries across 85 coun­tries. It’s Europe’s most valu­able cor­po­ra­tion, worth $240 bil­lion, com­fort­ably more than oil gi­ant Royal Dutch Shell. Among the world’s 195 na­tions, it sells in 189.

Nestlé’s im­pact on the his­tory of how we eat is al­most im­pos­si­ble to over­state. Sweets as we know them wouldn’t ex­ist with­out Henri Nestlé, the com­pany’s founder, who in the late 19th cen­tury sup­plied con­densed milk for the world’s first milk choco­late, made by a neigh­bor in Vevey, Switzer­land. Nestlé sci­en­tists cre­ated the first in­stant cof­fee, Nescafé, just in time for World War II ra­tions. Nestlé choco­late was in the first choco­late chip cookie.

The Nestlé food and drink em­pire, in­clud­ing San Pel­le­grino wa­ter and Stouf­fer’s frozen din­ners, is built on a foun­da­tion of sugar. But­terfin­ger, Cookie Crisp, KitKat, and Oh Henry! are all Nestlé prod­ucts. So are Drum­stick sun­dae cones, Häa­gen-Dazs ice cream, and Nesquik choco­late milk. In 1988, Nestlé even bought the life-im­i­tates-art candy brand that makes Laffy Taffy and Nerds: Willy Wonka.

The com­pany’s head­quar­ters, on Vevey’s Av­enue Nestlé, is far from a psy­che­delic sug­arscape out of Roald Dahl. The build­ing, the big­gest in town, is a high-mod­ernist pile of alu­minum and green-tinted glass that re­sem­bles an up­scale hos­pi­tal or a mid­size in­tel­li­gence agency. Up a spi­ral stair­case of gleam­ing metal, of­fices have fairy-tale views of sparkling Lake Geneva and the mist-shrouded Alps be­yond. The per­spec­tive tes­ti­fies that for a cen­tury and a half, sugar has been sweet. It isn’t any­more. Sugar is join­ing to­bacco and al­co­hol in the club of prod­ucts in which gov­ern­ments have taken an in­ter­est. In March the U.K. fol­lowed Mex­ico in im­pos­ing a tax on sug­ary drinks in an ef­fort to cut obe­sity. Saudi Ara­bia may fol­low. The U.S. Food and Drug Ad­min­is­tra­tion is weigh­ing far tougher rules for sugar la­bel­ing, and the lat­est edi­tion of U.S. di­etary rec­om­men­da­tions con­tained the strictest guid­ance on sugar yet.

In a 2013 review of pub­lished re­search, sci­en­tists af­fil­i­ated with France’s na­tional sci­en­tific in­sti­tute wrote that sugar and sweets “can not only sub­sti­tute [for] ad­dic­tive drugs, like co­caine, but can even be more re­ward­ing and at­trac­tive.” Al­though sugar is “clearly not as be­hav­iorally and psy­cho­log­i­cally toxic,” crav­ings for it can be just as in­tense, they said.

Sales in Nestlé’s con­fec­tionery business have fallen ev­ery year since 2012, match­ing de­clines of com­peti­tors. Af­ter as­saults on sodium and sat­u­rated fats, some in­dus­try fig­ures are won­der­ing openly if Big Food is the next Big To­bacco, with all the de­struc­tion of value that would im­ply. At ma­jor food com­pa­nies, “there’s com­plete para­noia,” says Lawrence Hut­ter, a con­sul­tant at Al­varez & Marsal in Lon­don who works with them. All the large food pro­duc­ers say they’re try­ing to re­duce their fi­nan­cial de­pen­dence on sugar. In flee­ing the storm, they’ve darted for vary­ing types of cover. Coca-Cola has shrunk soda cans; Mon­delēz In­ter­na­tional, the maker of Oreos, has be­come a power in the gluten-free move­ment; Pep­siCo has tried shift­ing to­ward healthy-ish snacks such as hum­mus.

Nestlé has cho­sen a rad­i­cally dif­fer­ent path. It wants to in­vent and sell medicine. The prod­ucts Nestlé wants to cre­ate would be based on in­gre­di­ents de­rived from food and de­liv­ered as an ap­peal­ing snack, not a pill, draw­ing on the com­pany’s ex­per­tise in the dark arts of en­gi­neer­ing food for looks, taste, and tex­ture. Some would re­quire a pre­scrip­tion, some would be over-the-counter, and some are al­ready on store shelves to­day.

Nestlé’s goal is to re­de­fine it­self as a sci­en­tif­i­cally driven “nu­tri­tion, health, and well­ness com­pany,” the kind that can thrive in a world where reg­u­la­tors may look at But­terfin­gers not so dif­fer­ently from Ben­son & Hedges. If this vi­sion is re­al­ized, a visit to the fam­ily doc­tor in a decade’s time might end with a pre­scrip­tion for a tasty Nestlé shake for heart trou­ble or a rec­om­men­da­tion for an FDA-ap­proved tea to strengthen ag­ing joints. The com­pany would ex­pand from the vend­ing ma­chine and su­per­mar­ket to the phar­macy, doc­tor’s of­fice, and hos­pi­tal. At the same time, it would keep its core food and sweets busi­nesses. In other words, Nestlé would sell a prob­lem with one hand and a rem­edy with the other.

Ed Baetge doesn’t touch any of Nestlé’s candy him­self, ex­cept for a bit of dark choco­late from the high-end Cailler line, and even that only on the

week­ends. Nor does he much fit the tem­plate of the col­or­less Swiss com­pany man. Next to his desk are a surf­ing cal­en­dar and a framed photo of a cobalt-blue wave crest­ing off Tor­rey Pines State Beach north of San Diego, where he grew up and still body­surfs when­ever he gets back to the U.S. When he makes a joke, he throws his head back into an ear­split­ting laugh and, a beat or two later, draws his hands into a sin­gle wide clap. In the land of the world’s finest time­pieces, he wears a Mickey Mouse watch.

Baetge, 59, was hired in 2010 to run the newly formed Nestlé In­sti­tute of Health Sci­ences. His phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal bona fides are unim­peach­able. Af­ter earn­ing a Ph.D. in molec­u­lar neu­ro­bi­ol­ogy at Cor­nell in 1983, he worked at a se­ries of biotech com­pa­nies. He spent 2001 to 2010 at Vi­aCyte in San Diego, work­ing on treat­ments for di­a­betes. When Nestlé came call­ing, ask­ing Baetge to lead re­search into how food could be turned into mar­ketable ther­a­pies, he was con­sid­er­ing an of­fer to run a New York cen­ter for stem cell re­search, one of the sex­i­est ar­eas of con­tem­po­rary sci­ence. His med­i­cal col­leagues were shocked when he said yes to Big Choco­late. “I was, like, in the hot seat for stem cells,” Baetge says. “They’d go, ‘You’re go­ing from there to work on nu­tri­tion?’” Nestlé gave Baetge a 10-year bud­get of 500 mil­lion Swiss francs ($524 mil­lion).

To­day, Baetge works in a nar­row of­fice, be­neath an elec­tronic white­board crammed with scrib­bled red notes, in Lau­sanne, a short drive up the lake from Vevey. On his desk are a Swiss army knife, bags of gra­nola, and a half-dozen pill bot­tles. He’s col­lect­ing sup­ple­ments such as cat’s-claw, a Peru­vian vine pur­ported to have an­tivi­ral prop­er­ties, to test whether there’s any­thing to the claims.

More than 160 sci­en­tists from cell bi­ol­ogy, gas­troin­testi­nal medicine, ge­nomics, and other fields work for Baetge in two build­ings here. One lab, on the scale of a child’s bed­room, is kept in near-per­ma­nent twi­light so light-sen­si­tive dyes can il­lu­mi­nate mi­cro­scopic mus­cle fibers and the nerves that con­trol them. In sam­ples of young mus­cle, the nerves glow candy-ap­ple red and con­nect to each fiber in tight cir­cles of elec­tric green. As tis­sue ages, the nerves turn spindly and faded. The more ir­reg­u­lar the green, the worse the in­ter­face and con­trol of the mus­cle—mean­ing more falls, weak­ness, and gen­eral de­crepi­tude.

A sec­ond room, de­voted to the brain, con­tains a laser-pow­ered mi­cro­scope the size and color of a small bar­be­cue grill. Its job is to record, as of­ten as 4,000 times a sec­ond, the ac­tiv­ity of in­di­vid­ual brain cells on lab slides. Healthy neu­rons, dis­played in bub­ble-gum pink on a nearby mon­i­tor, are elec­tri­cal dy­namos that fire a never-end­ing cas­cade of sig­nals. Re­searchers here are study­ing Alzheimer’s dis­ease, which stran­gles neu­rons, block­ing the links that al­low the brain to func­tion. Slowly those neu­rons go dark. No drug has man­aged to halt the pro­gres­sion.

Baetge ar­gues that food could be the ba­sis for an en­tirely new type of med­i­ca­tion—both pre­ven­tive treat­ments and ther­a­pies for acute dis­ease. Drugs de­liv­ered as food­stuffs might, in his telling, blunt the im­pact of ag­ing, ease the symp­toms of chronic ill­nesses such as di­a­betes, and even slow de­clines in cog­ni­tion. Food is cheap, plen­ti­ful, and fa­mil­iar. It “re­ally turns the phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal model on its head,” he says. “How do we ac­ti­vate the big­gest drug that we take ev­ery day?”

Much of what’s be­ing done at the in­sti­tute is “just like pharma,” Baetge says. “They’re screen­ing new chem­i­cal en­ti­ties, and we’re screen­ing nat­u­ral prod­ucts, es­pe­cially ones that come from food,” such as ex­tracts or pu­ri­fied mol­e­cules from mush­rooms, toma­toes, and other plants. His team has built a li­brary of more than 40,000 such com­pounds to try.

One dream achieve­ment is per­son­al­iza­tion, us­ing data on an in­di­vid­ual’s diet and health his­tory to de­sign be­spoke suites of agents that could be de­liv­ered in a cap­sule—imag­ine a Ne­spresso pod, per­haps, but for high choles­terol. Baetge also has the use of an ar­ray of gleam­ing ge­netic se­quenc­ing ma­chines. Un­der­stand­ing the ge­netic fac­tors that make some peo­ple lose or gain weight could al­low Nestlé to sell slimming plans cus­tom­ized to an in­di­vid­ual con­sumer’s geno­type.

Greg Be­har is an­other Nestlé ex­ec­u­tive who doesn’t eat too many KitKats. A cham­pion swim­mer who av­er­ages 20,000 steps a day on his Jaw­bone fit­ness tracker, he heads Nestlé Health Sci­ence, a sub­sidiary cre­ated along­side Baetge’s pure re­search arm and in­tended to com­mer­cial­ize its dis­cov­er­ies. Be­har has a staff of more than 3,000 and a di­rec­tive to de­velop “a new in­dus­try between food and phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals.” The group has bought stakes in star­tups such as Ac­cera, in Boul­der, Colo., which makes a pow­dered shake it says may ben­e­fit peo­ple with Alzheimer’s dis­ease.

Be­har says Nestlé Health Sci­ence has the po­ten­tial to be a business with 10 bil­lion francs in an­nual rev­enue. Even at the world’s big­gest food com­pany, that’s a lot. Con­fec­tionery sales to­taled about 9 bil­lion francs last year; an ad­di­tional 15 bil­lion came from milk prod­ucts and ice cream; and pow­dered and liq­uid bev­er­ages, par­tic­u­larly cof­fee, ac­counted for about 19 bil­lion.

Al­though re­search at Baetge’s in­sti­tute hasn’t yet led to any ac­tual prod­ucts—some­thing ex­ec­u­tives say will soon change— Nestlé Health Sci­ence has a sta­ble of brands from its ac­qui­si­tions and its own de­vel­op­ment work. The divi­sion al­ready has about 2 bil­lion francs of rev­enue per year from dozens of ex­ist­ing prod­ucts. Among them are Be­taquik, a milk­like drink for peo­ple with epilepsy, among other con­di­tions, and Meritene Re­gen­ervis, a fla­vored drink mix for fa­tigue and mus­cle func­tion. For can­cer pa­tients, it sells Re­source Sup­port Plus, a high­pro­tein drink avail­able in soft vanilla and plum-mango. For the obese there’s Op­ti­fast, a line of shakes, soups, and snack bars in­tended to be taken un­der the su­per­vi­sion of a doc­tor. Some of the prod­ucts are reg­u­lated as “med­i­cal foods” by the FDA.

Be­har, 46, joined Nestlé in 2014 from German pharma gi­ant Boehringer In­gel­heim. Sip­ping a bot­tle of Vit­tel wa­ter (an­other com­pany brand), he hap­pily lays out his work­out rou­tine. He trains for at least an hour ev­ery morn­ing, hit­ting the pool at 6 a.m. and bik­ing more than 180 miles a week. He com­petes in seven or eight triathlons a year, and he holds the Swiss record for his age group in the 200-me­ter back­stroke. He was one of the first adopters of the Jaw­bone band, in part be­cause his brother is Yves Béhar, the in­dus­trial de­signer re­spon­si­ble for its look. Ever on mes­sage, he cred­its some of his vi­tal­ity to a daily shot of Re­gen­ervis. “It’s just a sa­chet, and you mix it with wa­ter,” he says. “It’s a much bet­ter feel­ing than tak­ing a pill.”

Be­har says many more prod­ucts are on the way, for mo­bil­ity, gas­troin­testi­nal health, and the brain, among other ar­eas. Pro­bi­otics, or so-called good bac­te­ria for the gut, and mixes of pro­teins and vi­ta­mins for joints and bones are ar­eas of fo­cus. A fi­nal-stage clin­i­cal trial is planned on a “food-based treat­ment” for Crohn’s dis­ease. There will also be “in­no­va­tion fairly quickly in cog­ni­tive func­tion: mem­ory, mood, anx­i­ety. In these ar­eas we are right now devel­op­ing prod­ucts,” he says.

For the most part, the con­cepts Nestlé is work­ing on won’t ap­pear in the mar­ket­place as, say, a few ex­tra in­gre­di­ents in a Crunch bar. “If you find some­thing re­ally breakthrou­gh and just sprin­kle it in your yo­gurt, good luck get­ting a few more cents for it,” says Wolf­gang Re­ichen­berger, a for­mer Nestlé chief fi­nan­cial of­fi­cer. He’s now at In­ven­t­ages, a ven­ture cap­i­tal fund fo­cused on the junc­tion of food and health, in which Nestlé is a ma­jor in­vestor. In­stead, Nestlé plans to sell its de­vel­op­ments pri­mar­ily as stand­alone med­i­cal prod­ucts, which com­mand higher mar­gins and face less com­pe­ti­tion than su­per­mar­ket foods.

If mak­ing con­sumers fat has been big business, mak­ing them healthy could be big­ger. The phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal in­dus­try is worth $1 tril­lion a year and grow­ing. De­spite the scale of the po­ten­tial re­wards, the fi­nan­cial world isn’t quite sure what to make of Nestlé’s cat­e­gor­i­cal leap. In­tro­duc­ing an in-depth re­port on the trans­for­ma­tion in Jan­uary, con­sumer an­a­lysts at France’s Ex­ane BNP Paribas said they “are not pharma ex­perts” and needed to bone up on the business with col­leagues. The next month, Credit Suisse an­a­lysts fret­ted that Nestlé could be stray­ing too far from its core, with lit­tle clar­ity on how com­pet­i­tive it will be “should Big Pharma choose to lock horns.”

That as­sumes Nestlé can even get its new prod­ucts past gov­ern­ment agen­cies. The fuzzy border of food and drugs, tak­ing in ill-de­fined cat­e­gories such as “func­tional foods” and “nu­traceu­ti­cals,” is dom­i­nated by pseu­do­sci­en­tific sup­ple­ments of du­bi­ous health ben­e­fit, of­ten just a step ahead of reg­u­la­tors. In 2013 the FDA warned Ac­cera, one of Nestlé’s new part­ners, that it con­sid­ered the com­pany’s Ax­ona drink to be an “un­ap­proved new drug,” giv­ing am­mu­ni­tion to plain­tiffs seek­ing a class-ac­tion suit who ar­gued they’d been duped into think­ing it would ame­lio­rate Alzheimer’s. The suit was set­tled out of court; Ac­cera says it re­sponded to the FDA’s con­cerns and Ax­ona re­mains avail­able, though Ac­cera has since turned to more tra­di­tional drug de­vel­op­ment.

Many doc­tors and health ac­tivists are in­tensely skep­ti­cal of nutri­tional aids of all kinds, and a com­pany that’s es­sen­tially domi­ciled in Candy­land might not be the ideal can­di­date to change their mind. Af­ter all, one of the best things many peo­ple could do for their body would be to eat far less of what Nestlé has spent more than a cen­tury sell­ing. “We have known for decades what peo­ple should be eat­ing to be healthy, and that’s a bal­anced diet of whole foods,” says Mark Schatzker, the au­thor of The Dorito Ef­fect, a 2015 book about the sci­ence of food. (His brother, Erik Schatzker, works for Bloomberg Tele­vi­sion.) “When it comes to ba­sic nu­tri­tion, magic pills and magic drinks have never worked.” He adds: “Gen­er­ally speak­ing, the more we mess with food, the more we screw it up.”

ExxonMo­bil aside, it would be hard to name a cor­po­ra­tion

that’s at­tracted as much all-time neg­a­tive at­ten­tion from en­vi­ron­men­tal and hu­man-rights ac­tivists over the years as Nestlé. Be­gin­ning in the 1970s, cam­paign­ers ac­cused the com­pany of us­ing overly ag­gres­sive mar­ket­ing to per­suade moth­ers to buy baby for­mula in­stead of breast-feed­ing. They pointed to some­times tragic re­sults, with moth­ers mix­ing for­mula with con­tam­i­nated wa­ter to stretch their sup­ply, thus sick­en­ing or killing their in­fants. The re­sult­ing boy­cotts and protests lasted into

the 2000s and shaped the views of a gen­er­a­tion of ac­tivists. More re­cently, Green­peace in­tro­duced a with­er­ing cam­paign that ac­cused Nestlé of con­tribut­ing to the de­struc­tion of rain forests, and the an­i­mals liv­ing in them, by buy­ing from un­scrupu­lous palm oil plan­ta­tions. A vi­ral video showed a KitKat wrap­per be­ing opened to re­veal an orangutan’s sev­ered fin­ger, and pro­test­ers in­fil­trated the com­pany’s 2010 an­nual gen­eral meet­ing, hid­ing in the rafters to un­furl ban­ners.

Now, Nestlé says it be­lieves “breast milk is the ideal food for new­borns and in­fants” and that it con­forms to World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion guide­lines on for­mula mar­ket­ing; it also agreed to stop buy­ing palm oil from plan­ta­tions linked to de­for­esta­tion. Want­ing to be seen as a more re­spon­si­ble ac­tor, Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer Paul Bul­cke has set a va­ri­ety of ob­jec­tives in cat­e­gories such as re­duc­ing car­bon emis­sions, in­creas­ing the wel­fare of farm­ers, and con­serv­ing wa­ter. The ef­fort is backed by an ex­ten­sive pub­lic-re­la­tions cam­paign, and an an­nual progress re­port, Cre­at­ing

Shared Value, runs to more than 300 pages. The com­pany’s clear pre­oc­cu­pa­tion, though, is with re­but­ting the charge of com­plic­ity in soar­ing obe­sity rates. Nestlé says it’s grad­u­ally re­duc­ing sugar, salt, and sat­u­rated fat where it can and try­ing to help chil­dren learn “to bal­ance good nu­tri­tion with an ac­tive life­style.” It’s rolled out lower-sugar ver­sions of ce­re­als such as Chee­rios, and some boxes of Smar­ties are sep­a­rated into three card­board com­part­ments of 15 can­dies each to nudge con­sumers to­ward eat­ing less.

Nestlé’s health ef­forts will still have to con­tend with a jumbo tub of skep­ti­cism filled to the brim by past bat­tles. “I can­not be­lieve there’s any food prod­uct that re­ally im­proves health,” says Naveed Sat­tar, a pro­fes­sor of metabolic medicine atthe Univer­sity of Glas­gow, who’s tried to mea­sure the health ef­fects of in­gre­di­ents claimed to have dis­ease-fight­ing prop­er­ties. In­stead, Sat­tar says, the most sure­fire way to ame­lio­rate many se­ri­ous pub­lic-health chal­lenges would be for peo­ple sim­ply to eat a lot less. That, of course, trans­lates di­rectly into money lost for food com­pa­nies.

Ea­ger to show there’s a solid ba­sis for its ideas, Nestlé has built a 33,000-square-foot suite for hu­man clin­i­cal tri­als in Lau­sanne, dec­o­rated in a min­i­mal­ist style that calls to mind a Scan­di­na­vian air­port ter­mi­nal; it was cer­ti­fied as a health fa­cil­ity by the lo­cal au­thor­i­ties. It’s run by Mau­rice Beau­mont, a jovial for­mer French Air Force doc­tor who stud­ied slow-re­lease caf­feine for mil­i­tary pi­lots. (One of the chal­lenges was de­liv­er­ing a de­cent jolt with­out too much of a di­uretic ef­fect in bath­room-free cock­pits.) He’s par­tic­u­larly proud of a home­made “in­di­rect calorime­ter,” a gad­get that looks like a pool lounger en­cased in Plex­i­glas, fes­tooned with valves and sen­sors, and mea­sures the en­ergy burn and oxy­gen con­sump­tion of the typ­i­cally over­weight per­son in­side.

The irony of Nestlé study­ing obe­sity reme­dies is about as sub­tle as the glu­cose load of Nesquik ce­real, which has 25 grams of sugar in a 100-gram serv­ing. Al­though the com­pany’s ef­forts are com­mend­able, it’s “sell­ing prod­ucts on one side that might con­trib­ute to these ill­nesses,” says Leith Greenslade, head of the non­govern­men­tal or­ga­ni­za­tion JustAc­tions. “On the other side, they’re find­ing treat­ments for these ill­nesses. Some might call that a con­flict of in­ter­est.”

Stefan Cat­si­cas is the el­e­gant em­bod­i­ment of Nestlé’s con­vic­tion that there’s no con­flict. A quadrilin­gual Swiss neu­ro­sci­en­tist who be­came chief tech­nol­ogy of­fi­cer in 2013 af­ter a ca­reer in pharma and academia, his of­fice in Vevey drips with good taste. A triptych of ab­stract color-block paint­ings faces a meet­ing ta­ble laden with Ne­spresso-branded choco­lates and bot­tles of Vit­tel and San Pel­le­grino. There’s a sin­gle pur­ple orchid and, on the floor, a gift bag of Cailler choco­late. On a spec­tac­u­larly sunny Fri­day morn­ing, Cat­si­cas wears a blue-and-white-checked shirt with a blue tie, navy blazer, and gray trousers. His lightly ac­cented English is crisp, and his me­dia train­ing im­pec­ca­ble. “Sugar is not ad­dic­tive,” Cat­si­cas says. “You get habituated to sugar, which is not be­ing ad­dicted.” Shortly af­ter he came to Nestlé, Cat­si­cas grad­u­ally put less sugar in his morn­ing cof­fee, cut­ting out about 10 per­cent at a time. Within three months, he says proudly, he was tak­ing it black. In an hour­long dis­qui­si­tion on Nestlé’s ef­forts to make its core prod­ucts health­ier while also ven­tur­ing into medicine, Cat­si­cas says the com­pany badly wants to “be part of the so­lu­tion” to obe­sity. That de­sire, he ar­gues, re­flects evolv­ing sci­en­tific un­der­stand­ing. “Ten years ago, my pre­de­ces­sor could have said we didn’t re­ally know” about the scale of the prob­lem, he says. Now, “ev­ery­body knows that there is an is­sue.” Who knew what and when may be a sub­ject of more than aca­demic con­cern. “If a class-ac­tion group of lawyers can de­ter­mine that food com­pa­nies have known just how toxic sugar lev­els are, they will do what they’ve done to the to­bacco in­dus­try,” says Peter Jones, a nutri­tional sci­en­tist at the Univer­sity of Man­i­toba. Cat­si­cas re­jects the com­par­i­son to cig­a­rettes, swiftly coun­ter­ing that al­though there’s no such thing as a safe cig­a­rette, there’s cer­tainly safe food. In his nar­ra­tive, even though Big Food needs to do bet­ter, it’s been un­fairly tarred with re­spon­si­bil­ity in a com­plex de­bate over diet, ex­er­cise, and life­style. Be­sides, he says, it’s ul­ti­mately up to in­di­vid­u­als to make healthy choices. And if they should hap­pen to get sick, Nestlé wants to be there for them. <BW>

Nestlé head­quar­ters in Vevey, Switzer­land

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