The Wall Street Journal this morning reports that Gerber Products, Inc, the world’s largest and best known maker of baby food, may be for sale. Novartis, the parent company of Gerber, wants to spend more time making vaccines. It seems Nestle, the global 300-pound gorilla of infant nutrition, wants a stake in the American baby food market.
The baby food aisle at Babies R Us could get interesting. Organics are heating up and Earth’s Best is making a run for it based on their growing market share. Nestle, Gerber’s suitor, clearly has a growing interest in the use of probiotics in infant products. Mead Johnson Nutritionals, the makers of Enfamil Lipil, have made the case for DHA and ARA (long chained fats found to be important for brain and vision development) in infant formula. There’s even the suggestion that DHA and ARA are important beyond a baby’s first birthday when infant formulas aren’t used.
Stay tuned. Feeding babies may never be the same.