Nutrition Mission

Shaping the future through sustainable dairy nutrition
Milk and dairy are vital to helping meet the world’s nutritional needs. Good nutrition is essential for people to lead healthy and fulfilling lives. 

People eat for enjoyment and for the nutrients needed to fuel growth, development, health and wellbeing.

Milk and dairy products are a natural, unique and valuable source of essential nutrients with proven benefits to support health outcomes throughout the life stages. As a natural food we see milk and dairy products as an important part of the sustainable food systems of the future.

Our Belief

At Fonterra we believe that sustainable dairy goodness provides vital nutrition that will help people lead better lives.

Our Approach

The Fonterra Global Nutrition policy sets out our overarching commitments, including delivering science-based nutrition and health benefits, products tailored to specific nutritional needs and marketing these responsibly. 

Supporting the policy is our Nutrition Standard which outlines how we operate regarding nutrition, with detailed Nutrition Guidelines that define the nutrition criteria and principles for the composition and marketing of our consumer products and ingredients.

The New Zealand Nutrition Foundation has independently reviewed and endorsed our Nutrition Guidelines as evidence-based, founded in robust nutritional science and reflecting international directives on nutrition and health.

Our Global Nutrition Council, which is comprised of senior leaders, is responsible for governing our nutrition policy, standards, guidelines and overseeing the nutrition performance of our portfolio.  

The Fonterra Group Nutrition Policy sets out our high-level nutrition commitments to  provide goodness for generations. In 2017, we launched the detailed Fonterra Food and Nutrition Guidelines. The guidelines set the nutrition criteria for our product composition and inform our marketing practices across all branded consumer products and ingredients that Fonterra manufactures.

The guidelines complement food standards and regulations, as well as our own education and advocacy activities to raise awareness of the value of dairy nutrition in healthy, balanced diets.

Adding further credibility to these guidelines, the New Zealand Nutrition Foundation has independently reviewed and endorsed them as evidence-based guidelines founded on robust nutritional science and reflecting international directives on nutrition and health. 

In line with our endorsed nutrition guidelines, we continue to improve the nutritional composition of our products. 

We promote the use of beneficial ingredients that provide health benefits and we minimise those ingredients that may have a negative impact on health.

Our dairy nutrition criteria define minimums for dairy protein and micronutrient content. We are also minimising the addition of added sugars and refined carbohydrates to less than 2% of total daily energy requirements per serve. We have developed targets for our global consumer portfolio against these criteria and we assess and report our performance in the annual Fonterra Sustainability Report.

Our nutrition guidelines provide limits for sodium, in line with internationally accepted health guidelines and directives, as well as limits for fat, reflecting the natural composition of dairy. For products promoted for everyday consumption, we aim to provide reasonable serving sizes suitable for the occasion, in line with dietary guidelines. We provide our consumers with a choice of products and a variety of portion sizes to meet their nutrition requirements.

Fonterra supports the global public health objective to reduce intake of industrially-produced trans fatty acids in the diet and eliminate Partially Hydrogenated Oils from the food supply.


Nutrition Policy


Fonterra’s Nutrition Guidelines

Nutrition Expert Panel

Our nutrition expert panel is comprised of independent nutrition experts in their fields. Their role is to provide independent, external, nutrition expertise to bring insight and credibility to all actions and activities related to Fonterra’s Nutrition Identity and Strategy.

Julian Mellentin

Nutrition Expert Panel Member

Dr Manny Noakes

Nutrition Expert Panel Member

Nikki Hart

Nutrition Expert Panel Member

Responsible Marketing

We understand the important role we play in promoting healthy diets and lifestyles to our consumers and are committed to ensuring responsible consumption of our products throughout the life stages, in line with our company policies, international codes and country regulations.

Nutrition Community Initiatives

Alongside our partners here in New Zealand and around the world, we will continue to nourish those who need it most and support sustainable community projects. Learn more about just some of the many nutrition community initiatives we have underway.

In New Zealand
KickStart Breakfast

KickStart Breakfast is a joint initiative between Fonterra, Sanitarium and the Ministry of Social Development. The programme is designed to positively impact child wellbeing through providing access to nutritious food at school. It's helping give our tamariki and rangatahi a boost to both their school day and their future by ensuring they have a healthy start along with a full puku to keep them alert in the classroom. KickStart Breakfast has served more than 60 million breakfasts and runs in nearly 1,400 schools nationwide (as at 31 July 2023). 

Feeding New Zealand Communities

Feeding New Zealand communities is a partnership between Fonterra, Feed Out and the New Zealand Food Network. The Big Feed is a 12-hour rural telethon live-streamed on YouTube, aiming to raise money for as many meals as possible to distribute to families in need, bringing rural and urban communities together across the country.  Hosted by farmer-led charity Meat the Need, which facilitates donations of livestock and milk from farmers, as well as cash, to turn into meals and distribute to more than 110 food banks across the country. 

He Rourou Whai Painga

He Rourou Whai Painga is an ambitious study, to evaluate the effect of a 12-week dietary intervention on metabolic health using a whānau-based whole-diet combination of nutritious New Zealand foods and beverages. Funded by High-Value Nutrition Ko Ngā Kai Whai Painga National Science Challenge, it brings together cutting-edge New Zealand science and the Food and Beverage industry to improve the health of our communities. Fonterra is one of more than 30 New Zealand food and beverages producers who have partnered with the study, sharing 5,000L of Anchor Lite fresh milk with the 200 study participants and their whānau.

Around the world

Foodbank is the largest hunger relief organisation in Australia, and we’ve been partners with them for 14 years. We know how important food relief agencies are in supporting communities right across the country. For many people who experience food insecurity, even affording milk can be a struggle, so by partnering with Foodbank we can bring the goodness of dairy to those in need. We’re the fresh milk supplier in Victoria for Foodbank’s National Milk Program, donating 150,000 litres of milk as well as other dairy foods (as of 04 March 2024). 

Around the world
Staff Education Initiatives

Recently we ran our first nutrition summit globally for our 19,000 strong workforce. The aim was to upskill our people, particularly those new to Fonterra, with the information they needed on the benefits of our naturally nutritious dairy. We ran four sessions which included both internal and external experts culminating in a panel Q&A at the end. Including Julian Mellentin, from New Nutrition Business, Research Advisor, Dr Ty Beal, from the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) and Professor Warren McNabb from the Sustainable Nutrition Initiative (SNi®).

Around the world
Eat Well with Fonterra

For the last three years Fonterra Malaysia has partnered with Yayasan Food Bank Malaysia (YFBM) – a national food bank, developing initiatives to create a positive change in the community by putting its naturally nutritious dairy into the hands of those in need.

Contribution to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Milk and dairy products provide a meaningful contribution to our nutrition status and health outcomes, with more than ten essential nutrients for relatively low calories, which makes it both nutrient rich and nutrient dense.

As a food nutrition company, we recognise the valuable role nutrient rich milk and dairy products can play in addressing micronutrient deficiencies, improving people’s health and wellbeing across the globe. We wholeheartedly support the the United Nations SDGs and are committed to playing our part by working collaboratively to deliver change at scale.

Zero hunger
  • Provide access to safe, affordable nutrition.
  • Address malnutrition through products tailored to specific health needs.
  • Lift dairy productivity to meet growing nutritional needs in a sustainable way.
Good health and wellbeing
  • Responsibly provide products to support the wellbeing of people, including mothers and infants.
  • Continue to improve the nutritional profile of our products.
  • Promote healthy and informed consumer choices.