This paper draws on discourse analysis to examine how Dutch stakeholders in health education, health care, health insurance, social science, the food industry and the media make sense of innovations in the field of 'personalized nutrition' and their own role and significance in an early stage of technology development. Previous research has focused on factors that help or hinder collaboration between stakeholders, and on the development, management and implementation of joint programs. However, no attention has been paid to how stakeholders themselves handle issues of responsibility and initiative in relation to early technology development and collaborative interactions. The present study shows how such stakeholders establish themselves as gatekeepers of innovation by displaying authority on what consumers 'want' and 'cannot do', while avoiding a proactive role. Uncertainty in scientific knowledge, fixed roles and responsibilities and dependency on incompetent or biased others are drawn upon to account for a wait-and-see policy.