The Codex Alimentarius Commission of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO) develops food standards, guidelines and related texts for protecting consumer health and ensuring fair trade practices globally. The major part of the world's population lives in more than 160 countries that are members of the Codex Alimentarius. The Codex Standard on Infant Formula was adopted in 1981 based on scientific knowledge available in the 1970s and is currently being revised. As part of this process, the Codex Committee on Nutrition and Foods for Special Dietary Uses asked the ESPGHAN Committee on Nutrition to initiate a consultation process with the international scientific community to provide a proposal on nutrient levels in infant formulae, based on scientific analysis and taking into account existing scientific reports on the subject. ESPGHAN accepted the request and, in collaboration with its sister societies in the Federation of International Societies on Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, invited highly qualified experts in the area of infant nutrition to form an International Expert Group (IEG) to review the issues raised. The group arrived at recommendations on the compositional requirements for a global infant formula standard which are reported here.