Sanitarium – From Weet-Bix to Wellbeing

Posted by Josette Dunn on 6th September 2010

In a food industry first, Sanitarium has announced a groundbreaking, mutli-million dollar commitment to the nation’s health with plans to open health and wellbeing centres around Australia – the first of its kind officially opening in Pyrmont today (6 September 2010).


Sanctuary Health & Wellbeing Villages will offer health services in conventional medicine and complementary therapies, bringing together the best of integrated, evidence-based practice.

Sanitarium CEO Kevin Jackson said the exciting new direction had been inspired by the company’s rich heritage in health and wellbeing, and its mission to make a genuine difference to people’s health.

“In the early 1900’s, the much loved Sanitarium Cafes offered healthy food, regular health lectures, cooking classes and massages,” Mr Jackson said. “Today our Sanitarium Nutrition Service supports nearly 100,000 Australians each year with information to make healthy eating and lifestyle choices.

“Sanctuary will build on this strong foundation by offering a complete health solution that connects
directly with the community.
“It’s a significant move – one that truly demonstrates a strong and genuine commitment to health and wellbeing. Within 10 years, the plan is to have a Sanctuary Health & Wellbeing Village in each major urban area around the country, and possibly in New Zealand.”

Sanctuary at Pyrmont offers general practitioners, dietitians, naturopaths, counsellors, psychologists, cooking classes, massage, skin health, and movement and exercise coaching all under the one roof.

In addition to its team of health professionals, the centre gives people the opportunity to attend seminars from world-renowned experts sharing their knowledge on healthy living.

Sanitarium Health and Wellbeing Services General Manager Cathy McDonald said Sanctuary answered people’s desire for health services that treat them as a whole person.

“The NHMRC’s National Listening Tour uncovered a dissatisfaction with the current health offer and a desire among the community for one-stop shops offering a balance of conventional and allied health services focused on wellness. We believe Sanctuary delivers on all these counts,” Ms McDonald said.

The concept of having a presence in Australia’s rapidly growing wellbeing market has been researched and developed for five years. During this time the Sanitarium food business has also been investing in the growth of its Health and Wellbeing Services with the 2008 opening of Sanitarium Kitchen, a whole foods café in Brisbane, and the launch of Cultivate corporate health services, earlier this year.

Sanitarium is currently one of Australasia’s largest food companies with an annual sales turnover of $550 million. The Sanitarium food business employs more than 1500 staff across 12 manufacturing and sales sites in Australia and New Zealand.

As a not-for-profit organisation, Sanitarium contributes its wealth back to the community through its many charitable programs, including the Good Start Breakfast Club and support of various organisations for the homeless, as well as through the Seventh-day Adventist Church’s community and humanitarian programs.

The first Sanctuary Health & Wellbeing Village, at 7 Harris St, Pyrmont, is open Monday to Friday and on Sundays. For more information visit and Facebook at