Inside the Development of a Tube Feeding Formula

15 Sep 2018

by Nestlé Health Science

Did you know there’s an entire process that goes into the development of a tube-feeding formula? It can take years! We asked Joe, Senior Scientist Product Development and Project Manager of Compleat® Organic Blends, to share his thoughts on the making of these new organic blends. Here’s what Joe had to say:


What was the goal in developing Compleat® Organic Blends?
- We were passionate to deliver innovative products that our customers were asking for. We heard their desire for ingredients that are less processed; ingredients that they can understand. We were motivated to deliver that to our customers using all of the scientific capabilities available within Nestlé Health Science.


Where did the idea come from to develop this product?
- Compleat® and Compleat® Pediatric have been trusted names among caregivers, patients and healthcare professionals for a long time now. There has been a lot of research recently around whole foods like blueberries and potential health benefits from them. We wanted to provide these foods to our customers. And now we can offer them in a blenderized product with exceptional consistency, quality and safety.


What was the development process?
- We began with the nutrition that we wanted to deliver. Then we looked at what ingredients we were going to use to deliver that nutrition. After a lot of experimentation, we narrowed down the list and continued to refine the recipe to optimize the thickness, quality aspects, and even taste and aroma of the product.


Tell us about Nestle's quality standards process.
- Nestlé’s quality standards meet, and often exceed, any government requirements, which is why years of research and development go into launching our products. We want to deliver nutritional solutions that are above and beyond what is required based on the latest scientific research. Safety of the patient is our highest priority, so we make sure that the suppliers of our ingredients are of the highest quality and that the factories we use are exceptional.


How long did you work on this product?
- I was involved in the project for about 18 months, but there was a lot of research and work being done even before I joined the project. It takes a long time to test a variety of ingredients to be able to deliver the highest quality product.


What were your responsibilities?
- I was responsible for developing the products and managing the project. The team consisted of nutrition experts, dietitians, quality and manufacturing experts, and many more. It was my role to make sure that the team stayed on track and that we stayed focused on the goal—to deliver awesome, innovative products to the patients!


Why did your team refer to this as “Project Love”?
- I think of all the people who made it possible—nutrition scientists who always want the best nutrition for the patients and read tons of research to make the recommendations, regulatory experts helping us sort out the USDA Organic certification, and factory liaisons making sure everyone was prepared to make the batches. We were a team dedicated to getting this terrific product out to the people who need it. We heard a lot of requests for it from patients and caregivers. Our team loved working on this project.


How were patients, families and caregivers at the heart of “Project Love?”
- Throughout the process we would go back to the research to see what ingredients were preferred by both patients and healthcare professionals. In the labelling of the product , we wanted transparency. For example, we say Sweet Potato Puree, not just Sweet Potato, because that is the ingredient we use. We want to be straight with the consumer because they deserve to know what is inside. The patient can know what he or she is getting from our products.


After all these years of development, how does it feel to see Compleat® Organic Blends available to families?
- Really exciting! We spent so many hours experimenting and analyzing, working and reworking until we landed on the final blends. I am so proud of our relentless team and these great products. Patients and caregivers are going to be thrilled with Compleat® Organic Blends

Watch the video here.

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