Gerber Foundation: Grants for Science Research

OVERVIEW: The Gerber Foundation supports pediatric research studies across the United States.

IP TAKE: Gerber does not fund research requests exceeding $350,000 and limits grant periods to no more than three years.

PROFILE: Daniel Gerber, Sr. and the Gerber Products Company established the Gerber Foundation in 1952. Formerly known as the Gerber Baby Foods Fund, the organization changed its name to the Gerber Foundation in 1997 after the Gerber Products Company merged with Sandoz Ltd. In its early years, the foundation focused its grantmaking on agriculture, education, infant care and youth programs. The foundation has since narrowed grantmaking, supporting organizations enhancing the “[q]uality of life of infants and young children in nutrition, care and development.”

According to the foundation’s website, over 70 percent of its grantmaking is “[a]pplied to research focused on health and nutritional issues affecting infants and young children.” Remaining funding supports programs focusing on children ages 0 to 18 in Lake, Muskegon, Newago and Oceana Counties in West Michigan and college scholarships for students graduating from select high schools in Newaygo, Muskegon and Oceana Counties.

Gerber’s Pediatric Research program gives funding priiroty to “[p]rojects that improve the nutrition, care and development of infants and young children form the first year before birth to three years of age.” Research target areas include pediatric health, pediatric nutrition and environmental hazards.   

The pediatric health target focuses on overall health and treating diseases. Areas of particular interest include serious neonatal illnesses, early childhood illnesses and improving cognitive, social and emotional development. Gerber’s pediatric nutrition program supports research related to adequate nutrition for infants and young children and its environmental hazards program supports studies related to the effects of environmental hazards on infants and young children.

Gerber research grant amounts vary widely, ranging from $20,000 to $350,000. Past grantees include Katherine Bell of Brigham and Women’s Hospital, who received funding for her work assessing nutritional status of premature infants and Elizabeth Ames of the University of Michigan, who received a grant for her research regarding optimal renal replacement therapy in newborns. To learn more about the work Gerber supports and at what level, examine its research awards list.

The Gerber Foundation accepts concept papers from grantseekers throughout the year. For funding consideration in the current grant cycle, the foundation must receive concept papers by May 15 or November 15.


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