The history of the Nestle company starts in 1866 with the foundation in Cham, Switzerland, of the Anglo Swiss Condensed Milk Company. The following year, Henri Nestle developed an infant cereal in Vevey, Switzerland. Nestle and the Anglo Swiss Condensed Milk Company merged in 1905 following years of fierce competition.
By the end of the First World War, there were 40 Nestle factories across the world producing dairy products. Nestle launched Milo in 1935, Nescafe in 1938 and Nestea in 1940. During the Second World War, Nescafe coffee became popular among U.S. servicemen.
In 1947, Nestle merged with Alimentana S.A. and added the Maggi range of products, which included soups and seasonings, to its inventory. Nestle launched the instant chocolate drink Nesquik in 1948. The year 1986 saw the development of Nespresso, which allowed anyone to make the espresso coffee.
From 1977 to 1984, the Infant Formula Action Coalition carried out a boycott of Nestle products due to the decline of breastfeeding.
Nestle merged with the Ralston Purina Company in 2001 to form the Nestle Purina PetCare Company. In 2002, Nestle’s ice cream business merged with Dreyer’s. The acquisition of Movenpick Ice Cream followed in 2003.
In 2014, Nestle ventured into medical skin treatments with its wholly owned subsidiary Nestle Skin Health S.A.