About us

The Borrow Foundation was established in 1971. It is a grant making charity, a not-for-profit organisation, based in the UK.  

Our mission is to promote the improvement of oral health, primarily in children, through the prevention of oral diseases.   

Our work is expanding; the number of countries in which our grants are applied continues to grow.   

The Foundation is politically and financially independent. 

The trustees of the Foundation are: 

Professor Andrew Rugg-Gunn (Chair)
Dr Nigel Thomas    
Professor Christina Stecksén-Blicks    
Mr Nigel Borrow


Our history

Our founder Dr Edgar Borrow (1902 - 1990) was a farmer and mechanical engineer who resided in Southern England. He served on local and regional councils at a time when the need for community water fluoridation was being debated at great length. Combining his engineering skills with his experience gained from dairy farming, he began to explore the possibilities of fluoridating milk.  He thought that school milk programmes might be used as an alternative vehicle for the delivery of fluoride to children in communities where the fluoridation of water supplies was not possible. Having discovered that studies in this field had been undertaken in the 1950s and 1960s and that the results of this work had been encouraging, in 1971 he established the Foundation.


For many years milk fluoridation remained the charity’s core interest. During this time grants were provided for the conduct of extensive research and the implementation and evaluation of community-based programmes.

Whilst the use of fluorides in oral health remains a priority for the Foundation, more recently the charity has extended its support towards other approaches to oral disease prevention. This has led to considerable expansion in the charity’s activities.