With over 100,000 staff all over the world and nearly a century of brilliant experience, DANONE strives to take a major step toward its global mission of “Bringing health through food to as many people as possible”.
In 1896, according to a study by the German Professor Backhaus on the artificial production of human milk, the NUTRICIA Research Group in the city of Zoetermeer in Netherlands began its activity, and Dr. Jan van der Hagen and his brother Martin were able to develop the first formula for infant milk product.
Initially, the company specialized in the production of infant formula, and a fully equipped laboratory for the production of infant formula was established in order to find the needed nutrients for infants by considering their differences with each other.
In 1905, according to the results of NUTRICIA’s research, the first Medical Nutrition was produced. In this plan, low-sugar milk was produced for diabetics, and for people with goiter (due to iodine deficiency in the diet leading to enlargement of the thyroid gland), iodine milk was produced as well.
In the early 19th century, Isaac Carasso, with the observation of intestinal infection in Spanish children and according to the research of Pasteur Institute and the effects of fermentation on digestion decided to offer a product to market which was “yogurt” that was famous in Eastern Europe for its numerous health benefits. He registered the DANONE brand in 1919 after his son’s name. From the beginning, commitment to healthy nutrition production was put first on the agenda of DANONE Company.
In 1923, the first nutrition guidelines for infants and patients were formed based on NUTRICIA researches.
The first DANONE retail branch was opened in Paris in 1929, and the first slogan of the company with the health and pleasure orientation was introduced: “Delicious and healthy, DANONE yogurt is the right dessert for happy, healthy digestion.”
In 1941, DANONE founder began investing in a dairy related business in the United States, and in 1942 founded the DANONE Milk Products Company.
Over time, NUTRICIA led his research approach to improve food, and the first specialized research center was born.
In 1950, nutritionists joined DANONE NUTRICIA to provide accurate medical information for doctors and nurses.
In 1966, Antoine Riboud set up BSN by integrating two companies active in the production of glass bottles.
In 1970, BSN having acquired several companies (including Evian), became the largest producer of baby food and beverages.
In 1972, Antoine Riboud redefined business leadership in a historical speech and presented a different approach to management, taking into account social responsibilities. It was for the first time that an employer also looked at the humanitarian aspect of a business, and here DANONE merged his social responsibility for the health of the community with a commitment to success in its business.
At the end of 1972, the two BSN and DANONE companies announced their partnership, and by merging the two companies, a new giant was born in the food industry.
In the 1990s, the SHS specialized companies in England and Milupa in Germany merged with NUTRICIA. In this way, NUTRICIA also specialized in hereditary metabolic disturbances and severe allergies to cow’s milk. At this time, the NUTRICIA Company, in collaboration with the British Cow & Gate Baby Food Company, continued its activities under the name of NUMICO.
The NUTRICIA Research Center was founded in Wageningen in 1997.
NUMICO Company joined DANONE in 2007.
In 2013, the NUTRICIA Innovation Center was transferred to the Utrecht Science and Technology Park.
Sustainable research and development
DANONE’s worldwide reputation is due to the presence of scientists, knowledge-based products, and many other special features. With over 35 advanced research centers in Europe, North America, Asia, and Latin America, DANONE has always been working to develop suitable ingredients in its products to meet the nutritional requirements.
DANONE, with over 40 years of research on breastfeeding and nursing a baby, has significantly helped parents, doctors, and specialists.
Learn more about DANONE Research and Development Unit
Healthier tomorrow with the help of one another
We can always choose for ourselves or our children a healthy food or beverage, a choice that will shape our future.
Today, the global food system is not necessarily healthy, sustainable, and environmentally friendly. The expansion of societies is fraught with food challenges, improved livelihoods, and the protection of the environment, and our goal is to help address these challenges. We believe healthy food production contributes to environmental sustainability and creates a healthier tomorrow for people around the world. In order to turn this belief into reality, with possessing a team of hundred thousand employees, we try hard to always be a top-notch health and nutrition company.
Based on DANONE’s mission and the manifesto, we pursue three goals with a focus on sustainable development:
- Better Nutrition: Our goal in this area is to support healthier eating and drinking habits from both the social and cultural aspects.
- Better Life: Every day, our business affects the lives of millions of people, from employees and consumers to farmers and suppliers. Our approach in this area is to have a positive impact on the lives of each person whom we work with and for.
- Better World: Healthy food begins with a healthy nature. Our goals in this area are environmental harm-free agriculture, a healthier cycle of clean water without the creation of harmful gases and environmentally recyclable packaging. DANONE alone cannot achieve these goals. Therefore, we always interact with our local partners to choose the best solutions.
We know that food is a cultural issue, different communities have their own needs, and ecosystems are completely unique. Therefore, we manage our programs in such a way that we can respond to the different needs of people anywhere and with any taste.