Nestlé Plant Uses Indiana Milk to Produce Top Products

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Nesquik bunny sign in Anderson, Indiana

If you head north from Indianapolis on I-69, you can’t miss the Nesquik Bunny, an elaborate sign located just south of Anderson, Ind., which towers 50 feet above the surrounding countryside and entertains travelers with mini-videos and animations presented on its enormous electronic marquee.

It’s become a landmark along that stretch of interstate, but it also announces to the world that Anderson is home to Nestlé USA’s state-of-the-art factory and distribution center, which will be celebrating its five-year anniversary this year.

The plant produces what are known as “aseptic ready-to-drink products.” Aseptic means “free from pathogenic microorganisms.” For Nesquik, Nestlé uses ultra-high temperature pasteurization, or UHT, to eliminate virtually all bacteria from its Nesquik products, making it commercially sterile. One of the benefits of this process is that Nesquik can be stored in the pantry and cooled down just before you drink it.

SEE ALSO: How Does Milk Become Nesquik?

According to informational materials from Nestlé, the company uses the aseptic packaging technique on all of the products it makes in Anderson: ready-to-drink Nesquik (available in strawberry, banana strawberry, vanilla and double chocolate as well as chocolate), Coffee-Mate liquid products and Boost nutritional drinks. The products are made here in Indiana and distributed throughout the United States, according to Nestlé.

Nestlé Nesquick

But it all starts with milk that Nestlé gets almost straight from the cow.

The plant works with a dairy cooperative, which collects milk from farmers and coordinates getting milk to the plant, a Nestlé spokesman says.

Most of that milk comes from Indiana farmers, notes shift manager Charlie Turner, who grew up on a dairy farm in Hancock County and received his degree in food science from Purdue. The remainder comes from surrounding states.

The milk comes into the plant by truck, is tested for quality and is pumped into Nestlé’s system before being made into the various products, Turner explained. In the case of Nesquik, Nestlé says they process the milk, which is used to make chocolate, strawberry or vanilla milk.

And Nestlé processes a lot of milk – the equivalent of the production of 15,000 cows per day, according to Nestlé, a figure that becomes even more impressive when you consider that according to Purdue University, a cow typically produces around 6.5 gallons each day.

A September 2012 article in The Anderson Herald Bulletin quotes company officials as saying that the Anderson facility produces on average 3 to 4 million bottles of its three products every day.

Nestle Products

Equally impressive is the plant itself, which employs around 600 people and covers around 1.1 million square feet. Originally constructed between August 2006 and June 2008 at a cost of around $359 million, the plant has been expanded at a cost of an additional $200 million, Nestlé says, making it one of the largest of its kind in the world and one of Nestlé’s largest-ever capital investments.

Everything is there under one roof: the milk receiving area where the milk trucks come to deliver their loads of whole milk; shiny stainless-steel processing machines and conveyor belts; pallets full of flavorings (and, on the day My Indiana Home visited, smelling enticingly of vanilla cookies); the intriguingly named “Cocoa Room,” which, alas, was not accessible to chocoholic visitors; streamers of colorful labels being fed through the labeling machines; and endless moving lines of brown, cream or pink Nesquik on its way to being boxed for shipping and cooled before heading out to supermarkets, other vendors and lovers of chocolate, strawberry and vanilla milk across the U.S.

14 Comments

  1. Jeff Weisman

    January 16, 2014 at 1:24 pm

    I have been a Nesquik user all of my life! At age 59 I still drink the Chocolate Milk! These days though I use the Chocolate Low Fat Milk, and I use it 4 taking most of my pills with as they R supposed 2 b taken with milk. Recently in like the past 5 or 6 weeks I’ve noticed that the Milk goes sour MUCH Faster than it used 2? Have u reduced ur amounts of preservatives? Once opened the container seems 2 sour in 6 to 7 days at most? It used 2 be that it would be good through about 10 days which is enough 2 cover 10 days of me taking my pills. Can u folks enlighten me on the change that u’ve made? Thank u 4 ur time,
    Jeff Weisman

  2. Hunter

    March 6, 2014 at 8:34 am

    We drove by this plant and that big bunny is awesome

  3. admin

    March 31, 2015 at 9:09 am

    Please note our comment policy: http://my-indiana-home.com/statement. Thank you for understanding.

  4. Debbie McGinness

    April 8, 2015 at 10:53 am

    We just drove past your plant on our way to Ft. Wayne. The bunny sign is adorable. The kids loved it. Do you ever have tours?

    • Jessy Yancey

      June 11, 2015 at 10:20 am

      Hi Debbie,

      We aren’t affiliated with Nestle – we just did a story about them. However, I don’t believe they offer tours, unfortunately. But if you want to learn more about Indiana milk, check out Fair Oaks Farms just off I-65 north. They have some great tours and activities for kids! (http://fofarms.com/adventures/dairy-adventure)

      Thanks,
      Jessy Yancey
      editor, My Indiana Home

    • Karen Maddox

      September 6, 2017 at 12:58 pm

      Do you let people do tours?

      • Karen Maddox

        September 6, 2017 at 12:59 pm

        Do you let people do tours?

  5. Sue Krueger-Brennan

    March 12, 2016 at 7:07 pm

    Just wondering if you give tours I’m interested to bring my grandson and friends to indianapolis area and we would stop in there for a tour …

    • Rachel Bertone

      March 17, 2016 at 9:05 am

      Hi Sue,

      Thanks for your comment! We suggest contacting the Anderson plant directly at (765) 778-6000 for tour information. They should be able to answer your question. Hope this helps!

      Rachel Bertone
      editor, My Indiana Home

      • Sue Krueger-Brennan

        March 30, 2016 at 3:43 pm

        Who ever answers there phone was very very rude he hung up on me with out saying buy and I wasn’t even finished talking so I called back and he was so F _______ rude I’m all done buying nestle quick that guy can go screw the rabbit ……….very disappointed I recommend do not buy nestle quick product…

  6. Andy

    July 27, 2016 at 1:37 pm

    Yeah I just called that #, a lady answered and says they do not offer any tours.. sucks!

  7. David Boyers

    January 22, 2017 at 7:44 am

    Not sure this is the correct place or not for this, but I opened a new creamer, French Vanilla, and it had a pin hole in the lid the size if a needle, only way I noticed was it had leaked a very small amount, and when the bottle was squeezed it bubbled out. Years ago I would have cleaned it up and used it, but not in today’s world. I do still have the bottle if you need anything.

  8. Diana White

    April 25, 2017 at 11:18 am

    On a road trip from Missouri through Anderson Indiana the 50 foot Nestlé Quiky the Bunny was SO nice to share with me some of my favorite chocolate drink!

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/54188093@N03/34264162915/in/dateposted-public/

  9. Stauffer

    December 12, 2017 at 10:24 am

    I Like Seeing the Nestle Rabbit. We always look for it while traveling up here.
    Not doing tour is ok. It would be interesting. Bu Im in business myself and know how hard it is to keep everyone happy..
    Have a Blessed Day..
    And Lets be kind to each other…

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