Issue 24: February 1999
The news items which appear on this page are abridged versions of stories which appear in full in the printed version of Update, which is available to members of Baby Milk Action. Membership
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Table of Contents
supplement with the latest on the Nestlé boycott
Editorial: It's not just over there...
Globally breastfeeding is a political issue, and the UK is not an exception. Many factors have led to the decline of breastfeeding in the UK, and the fact that we are now largely a bottle feeding nation. The persistent undermining of breastfeeding by medical practices along with over one hundred years of aggressive marketing by baby milk companies has undoubtably had the greatest impact. Since the turn of the century artificial milks have been produced commercially for babies, utilising surpluses of whey - a by-product of the dairy farming industry.
Media headlines often tell us of how a woman has been humiliated for breastfeeding in public, and the most recent Government survey revealed that at 6 months old only 21% of babies receive any breastmilk (ONS 1997).
Although the UK was the strongest supporter of the International Code when it was first adopted in 1981 there was no legislation to control baby milk marketing in the UK until 1995. And even then, the law which was introduced is more limited in scope than the International Code and includes many loopholes.
The problems caused by using artificial baby milks in the UK may be less 'visible' and cause less deaths than those in less developed countries, but morbidity rates are significantly higher among babies in the UK who have not been breastfed. For example, they are twice as likely to develop diabetes. And it has been estimated that if all premature babies had only breastmilk it would save 100 lives a year in Britain.
In this Update we focus on the effectiveness of current legislation, and at the role of health professional bodies and mother support groups in working towards a healthier nation. We also look at how we can all work together with our IBFAN partners around the world to assist in the development and implementation of legislation which protects infants - wherever they live.
The Code, the Directives, the UK Law
A global tool
A number of UN Resolutions have been passed which aim to halt the promotional activities of the baby feeding industry. The most significant Resolution included the International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes, (the Code) which was adopted in 1981 by the World Health Assembly. The Code is a "minimum requirement", to be implemented "in its entirety" by "all countries." Although the Code is a recommendation (not a regulation or a convention) it carries the moral force of the world's highest health policy setting body. It applies to everyone who has an impact on child health - baby food manufacturers and distributors, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), health workers, governments and individuals.
The Code in Europe
Following the adoption of the Code, the European Parliament voted three times (the first time in 1981) for it to be adopted as a Directive for Europe. Over a decade of work by MEPs, IBFAN and over 1000 NGOs followed (along with much debate and controversy), before a Council Resolution and two European Directives were eventually passed - one in 1991 for the internal market and one in 1993 controlling exports. The lobbying resulted in important changes which mean that the Directives, although much more limited than the Code , do at least, allow Member States to implement the whole Code if they wish, stating that:
" Whereas in an effort to provide better protection for the health of infants, the rules ... laid down in this Directive should be in conformity with the principles and aims of the International Code ...."
IBFAN's long-running campaign for strong, independent and transparent controls on baby food marketing in Europe illustrates the need to keep a close eye on the European Commission, the World Health Assembly, and bodies such as the Codex Commission (which sets international food standards). The baby food industry exerts an increasingly powerful and often secret influence on all these bodies and is always working for weaker and weaker controls.
The European baby milk Directives have an important influence on infant health both within and outside Europe. EU officials responsible for encouraging trade with Europe have criticised policy makers in many former Soviet states (CIS) for proposing laws which go further than the Directives - promoting them as maximum - rather than minimum standards. Globally EU officials and companies push the Directives as standards for many trade agreements. As a result of such pressure, perhaps it's not surprising that so many policy makers have found it difficult to put health first. In the drive to increase trade, exports and jobs, the health and economic consequences of inappropriate nutrition are easily forgotten. We have yet to see whether the Convention on the Rights of the Child will counter these forces.
The UK in Europe
The UK Government, via the Joint Food Safety and Standards Group convened by the Department of Health (DH) and the Ministry of Agriculture (MAFF), attempts to open up the EU procedures to consumers through formal consultations. In the last six months alone Baby Milk Action has been invited to submit comments to numerous policy documents which affect infant feeding: European proposals on lead and cadmium, directives for foods for medical purposes and pesticides, the BSE Inquiry, the UK inquiry into Women and Development, Codex Alimentarious Standards, and regulations on bottled water and on nutrition claims. As a result of such consultations, the UK has often spoken up for the Code and Resolutions in international fora, and played an important role in the strengthening of the Directives themselves. Strangely, it then fails to implement them fully at home. The UK Law which was adopted in 1995 has done little to stop promotion through the health care system
New Food Agency arrives
The announcement in January of proposals for the new Food Standards Agency, to protect public health from risks relating to food, may herald a turning point. The FSA will be answerable to the DH and the draft bill proposes half-funding from a levy from food premises. Regarding its membership it states that "The appropriate authorities must consider whether [any member has] any financial or other interest which in their opinion is likely to prejudice the exercise of his duties." This should exclude anyone whose main income comes from the food industry.
Meanwhile, through the UK Law Working Group, we continue to work for the Law to be strengthened. LACOTS (the Trading Standards Advisory Body) has promised to review the working of the UK Law in the SpRing to see whether changes need to be made.
Health workers and the Code
Health professionals have played an important role in the advocacy for the International Code in the UK over the last two decades, with many joining our lobby for the European Directives. In 1994, 48 health, consumer and development bodies called for the UK Law to ban advertising.
Policies on the Code and Resolutions
The UK Law Working Group decided to conduct a survey of health organisations in the UK to examine their policies in relation to the Code and the more recent WHA Resolutions, which specifically address sponsorship. We started with some of the key members of the working group. The following organisations said that they support both the International Code and the newer Resolutions, they also have a policy (or are working towards one) concerned with commercial sponsorship: Association of Radical Midwives (ARM), Breastfeeding Network (BfN), La Leche League (LLL), National Childbirth Trust (NCT), Royal College of Nursing (RCN), UK Baby Friendly Initiative (UKBFI) and the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH).
"Put our own house in order!"
A recent poll of Baby Milk Action members revealed that many believe that if we are to assist other countries in implementing legislation regarding the International Code then the UK should 'put it's own house in order' first! Health professional bodies in the UK are in a key position to influence not only Government policy but also their members who have an important role in helping mothers make decisions about infant feeding.
Representatives from key health bodies in the UK meet regularly at the UK Law Working Group to discuss the marketing of breasmilk substitutes and the legislation which controls it. The aim of the group is to work towards bringing the current legislation into line with the International Code and Resolutions. For optimal infant health it is crucial not only that effective legislation is in place, but that it is adhered to. Health worker organisations - whether they are professional or lay - are in prime positions to ensure that this happens.
Contact your health organisation about their policy regarding the Code, the Resolutions and sponsorship.
UK Baby Friendly Initiative
The UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative (BFI) was launched in 1994 to increase breastfeeding rates by implementing the 'Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding'. In 1995 the first UK hospital achieved Baby Friendly status. Since then 'baby friendly fever' has gripped the UK, with more and more hospitals (and communities) working towards improving their practice to increase breastfeeding rates. To date, 15 maternity units have received UK Baby Friendly accredition, one of which is Queen's Park Hospital in Blackburn which has doubled the unit's breastfeeding initiation rate from 27% to 61% since 1991. Another 46 units have been awarded certificates of commitment. As Gill Rapley, Professional Officer for BFI, says, 'Going for an award is optional - good practice is not'.
For more details contact:
|UK Baby Friendly Initiative,
20 Guilford Street,
Milk banking in the UK
When the recently formed United Kingdom Association for Milk Banking (UKAMB) was launched last May at the Queen Charlotte's and Chelsea Hospital in West London, the response from breastfeeding mothers was overwhelming. Gillian Weaver, Co-ordinator of Queen Charlotte's Milk Bank and Vice Chair of UKAMB explains why.
Since their rapid demise in the late 1980's, you could be forgiven for being unaware of the gradual resurgence of interest in donor milk banks and the use of donor breastmilk. However, last May, during the National Breastfeeding Awareness Week, the launch of UKAMB received much publicity. This was largely thanks to Richard Hanniford, BBC Health Correspondent, who decided the launch was sufficiently newsworthy to warrant national television and radio coverage. In the same week, the Southampton Milk Bank was featured on the daytime TV programme The General. The overall result was an influx of calls to my office which at the time seemed beyond belief. For several days the telephone didn't stop ringing as hundreds of pregnant and breastfeeding mothers from all over the UK volunteered to become milk donors. I soon discovered that the message taker on my phone can deal with many callers at the same time so that even when I was engaged on a call, more and more women were leaving their telephone numbers or addresses with requests to be contacted!
Sadly, some of these callers had previously been told that milk banks no longer exist by well-meaning but ill-informed health visitors and midwives. Ironically many of the callers were disappointed in their quest as they lived too far away from their nearest milk bank to be considered as a donor. With only thirteen milk banks operating in the UK, and seven of these situated in London and the South East, most of the country is without easy access to a milk bank.
Milk banks in the UK are hospital based and are usually sited close to the neonatal unit. With the exception of the Mothers' Milk Bank in Birmingham, which has milk available to buy, they are all organised on a small scale and primarily supply only the Neonatal Unit or Paediatric Department that funds them. This in turn restricts the recruitment of donors to those women who are within reasonable travelling distance of the bank. Exceptions are sometimes made if donors are willing to travel to their nearest milk bank for the necessary blood tests (including HIV) and if transport can be arranged for the milk. Breastmilk donors are always unpaid volunteers. Some milk banks arrange the collection of the frozen, donated milk but others rely on volunteer drivers or the donors to deliver the milk to them.
Mothers being thwarted in their desire to donate some of their breastmilk to help sick babies will remain an unfortunate reality unless milk banks increase in number or operate on a grander scale or a regional basis. Of more concern is the inequality of access of sick babies to supplies of the donor breastmilk which could make an important contribution to their overall care. Only those neonatal units with instant access to a milk bank are able to routinely offer it to babies for whom the mother's own breastmilk is unavailable. A woman may have insufficient milk because she is too ill or anxious to supply enough. The babies who benefit most from donated breastmilk are those who have been born very early, especially if their growth has been restricted in the uterus. However, in those hospitals with a milk bank, many other babies are also able to benefit by commencing milk feeds earlier than might otherwise be the case. The early milk or colostrum can be difficult to collect and it may be a few days before the mothers of babies who have been admitted to the neonatal unit are able to meet their needs, especially with twins or triplets.
A mother's own untreated breastmilk will always be far superior to heat treated donor milk because of its greater concentration of anti-infective constituents and because it will be more readily digested. On those neonatal units with easy access to a milk bank, the availability of donor milk does not diminish the efforts made to help the mother provide her own breastmilk. However, where this is not possible due to ill health, separation from the baby or problems with her lactation, the knowledge that her baby can start feeding on breastmilk can do much to alleviate the mother's concerns. This in itself may help her milk supply. Equally important is the underlying message given by units where donor milk is used about the importance they attach to feeding babies with breastmilk!
UKAMB aims to make it easier for hospitals to start up a milk bank and make donor milk more readily available to neonatal units without one. In the future it is hoped that those banks that have a surplus of milk will be able to register this with the Association, who can then quickly put hospitals in touch with their nearest unit with milk to spare. A fee to cover the processing and handling costs may be charged by the milk bank.
For more details contact:
|UNITED KINGDOM ASSOCIATION FOR MILK BANKING
Chair: Dr Sue Balmer
Vice Chair: Gillian Weaver
UKAMB has been established to:
UKAMB web site: www.science-network.com/ukamb/
- provide a forum for the exchange of information about milk banking
- set standards for the practice of milk banking
- regularly review guidelines for milk banking
- encourage research into milk banking practices
- promote milk banking so that more milk donors come forward
Benefits of milk banks in Brazil
The milk bank in the San Jose Municipal Hospital opened in October 1994 and serves the city and surrounding area, and has contributed to a fall in infant mortality. About 40 mothers donate milk in any month. This is collected from their homes once a week. The milk is pasteurised (at 62.5 deg. C for 30 mins) and a culture is left for 48 hours before the milk is used; many of the immunoglobulins in the breastmilk remain and provide protection against infection. About 800 litres are processed a year - enough for all premature infants to be cup fed. When there is enough milk, the infants of mothers infected with HIV receive donated milk instead of infant formula. Donors in the Sao Paulo region are tested for HIV even though pasteurisation is sufficient to kill the HIV virus. There are 94 milk banks in the Brazilian Banco de Leite Nacional Associacion. One bank in each region has the role of training staff in new banks as these are introduced.
New research on HIV drug therapy includes breastfeeding mothers
Previously Baby Milk Action has outlined our concerns about the new UN policies relating to mother-to-child transmission of HIV via breastmilk, and the need for truly independent funds for further research (see Update 22 and Update 23). Preliminary findings of a large clinical trial of mother-to-child transmission of HIV in urban settings in Uganda, Tanzania and South Africa were published in February. Researchers have found that among mothers who took both zidovudine (AZT) and lamivudine (3TC) for only one week (beginning at the time of delivery), at six weeks after birth the incidence of HIV transmission was reduced by 37%. The UNAIDS press release states that 'the majority of women in the trial practiced breastfeeding' - unlike the trials in Thailand last year where all mothers used artificial baby milks. Monitoring will continue for 18 months.
Baby Milk Action, many NGOs and governments have concerns about the feasibility of using artificial baby milk and AZT - especially in resource poor settings, so these new findings could be significant. In November 1998 South Africa cut funding for an AZT programme, and announced that the $14 million would be better spent on public education (estimated treatment costs were up to $131 per woman). It has also been reported in Zimbabwe that breastfeeding will continue to be encouraged, even for mothers infected with HIV, as it is considered that poverty prohibits 'safe' artificial feeding.
NGO Capacity Building in Russia
Baby Milk Action is a resource
centre within the International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN)
for NGO capacity building. In recent years Baby Milk Action has
taken part in training courses on the International
Code in the Baltics, Eastern Europe and the Central Asian
Republics. In November 1998 we organised a seminar in Moscow for
participants from Russia, Ukraine, Belorussia, Kazakhstan and
Bulgaria. The five day course, funded by UNICEF and DGIS (Dutch
Government), took place in Russian and used the IBFAN Action Pack
which Baby Milk Action has developed with IBFAN partners as a
resource for new groups. It is hoped that a number of new IBFAN
groups will be formed in the region as a result of the seminar
and will commence work on implementing the International Code
Companies already active in the region include Numico, Mead Johnson, Nestlé and Hipp.
Baby Milk Action is seeking donors to fund monitoring activities in the region.
- The impact of the growing network can be seen. Nestlé has now promised to revise its labels for Piltti infant formula, marketed in Ukraine. These presently carry an idealizing infant picture (showing a child's foot being caressed by an adult's hand) and were featured on the December 1998 Campaign for Ethical Marketing action sheet (see also Boycott News 24).
Infant feeding in emergencies
An international meeting on infant feeding in emergencies was organised by IBFAN in Split, Croatia in October. Members of the UK Infant Feeding in Emergencies Group (IFEG) (including Baby Milk Action, Save the Children and Children's Aid Direct) joined participants from 23 countries to develop action plans to improve co-ordination between agencies and prevent commercial exploitation. Dr Aileen Robertson, of WHO Europe, used events in Bosnia and Russia to explain how "emergency situations can be public health opportunities" and stressed the importance of protecting local food production. Breastmilk, of course, is the most local food possible. (The UK IFEG report is available in draft form on the Internet at www.tcd.ie/enn/InfantFeedingReport/
Meanwhile the business community is promoting its own view of its role in emergencies. The Business Humanitarian Forum, with an initial budget of US$ 250,000, met for the first time in a luxury hotel in Geneva in January, aiming to "strengthen the ties between the business and humanitarian communities". Participants included top people from the world's largest military contractors as well as Nestlé, Rio Tinto, Merck, and several UN agencies and NGOs. Media was strictly excluded "to facilitate open discussions." (Ref: Gemini News)
- See Boycott News for the PR firm Saatchi and Saatchi's advice to Nestlé to counter recent adverse publicity with an 'offensive' which advertises its links with charities.
Round the table at WHO
The new Director General of the World Health Organisation, Dr Gro Harlem Brundtland, is convening a series of 'Round Table' meetings with NGOs and with the private sector. IBFAN and Health Action International (HAI), which works to promote a more rational use of drugs, have been invited. IBFAN first met Dr Brundtland in September, and in November we met her again, with WHO and UNAIDS staff. Baby Milk Action joined IBFAN partners from the Philippines and Geneva, La Leche League International and the International Lactation Consultants Association. The International Association of Infant Food Manufacturers (IFM) met WHO the next day.
We were pleased that Dr Brundtland was keen to find new ways to increase the protection of infant health and stressed the equal importance of the Code and Resolutions. However, we are concerned about the purpose, structure and reporting procedures for the meetings. IBFAN is consulting widely before agreeing to any joint meetings with industry and explained our concerns about the way IFM might use such them for public relations purposes. We cited examples from countries in Africa, Pakistan, the Philippines and the UK where this had happened.
HAI on sponsorship
In December, Baby Milk Action attended HAI's one day conference on sponsorship in Paris. The advantages and risks of accepting commercial sponsorship were explored. A report will be available soon.
- WHO's new Director for Health Technology and Drugs was formerly Director of Marketing of SmithKline Beecham Biologicals.
Risky Medical Directive adopted
In Update 23 we reported our concerns about a proposed European Commission Directive for Foods for Special Medical Purposes. This Directive could legitimise yet more unethical marketing of baby milks. The European Commission minimised the risks raised by some Member States and after a close vote the Directive was adopted unchanged in December. We are continuing to work with MEPs, MAFF, health workers and our IBFAN partners in Europe to amend the new Directive and to find a way to limit its potential risks.
Pesticides on hold
At the same meeting in Brussels, long-overdue proposals for limits on pesticides in baby foods were discussed, but not passed. We welcomed them, but warned that manufacturers must not be allowed to promote the absence of pesticides in ways which undermine breastfeeding and local foods. Labels should alert consumers to other contaminants and ingredients in baby foods and milks, such as, genetically modified (GM) soya and residues from the use of the GM hormone rBST. (Canada has now refused authorisation of rBST, but the moritorium on its use in Europe is due to end this year.) Bottled water and nutrition claims are also being discussed in the UK.
Convention rules on Ireland
The Committee on the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) has made recommendations to Ireland including that it implements the Code and Resolutions, and extends maternity leave. The Committee was concerned about Ireland's low rate of breastfeeding - the most recent survey in 1990 shows that only 31% of mothers even attempt to breastfeed. Luxembourg has also been asked to implement the Code. All EU member States have ratified the CRC and the UK will be reporting on its compliance later this year. The CRC is the "most universally embraced human rights instrument in history" (UNICEF 1998) - with only two countries - the USA and Somalia - not having signed up.
Baby Milk Action Ireland's report on the Code in 1998 (Update 23) illustrates the impact of the Irish Government's failure to take action on the Code. An Irish Ministry of Agriculture press release (May '98) announced a £37m expansion by Wyeth Nutritionals Ireland, and showed how exports and jobs seem to take precedence over infant health. A spokesman says that "Ireland would comfortably achieve its strategic target of 100,000 tonnes of infant formula by the year 2,000, making Ireland one of the top producers of infant formula worldwide."
Rights for women at work
For many women the amount of maternity leave to which they are entitled may affect their decision whether or not to breastfeed. Alison Linnecar, from GIFA (IBFAN Geneva), explains how the ILO Convention on Maternity Protection is being examined this year, and the measures which IBFAN, and other interested groups, should take:
In June 1999, the Conference of the International Labour Office (ILO) will examine the revision of the ILO Convention number 103 on Maternity Protection, and its related Recommendation number 95. A Convention is legally binding on Member States which have acceded to it and ratified it; the problem with these maternity protection Conventions is that very few Member States have done so. Although just over thirty States have ratified, recent ILO research shows that in fact many governments have gone far beyond the minimal requirements of Convention number 103, that is for twelve weeks paid maternity leave. For example, in member states of the European Union, women are entitled to sixteen weeks paid leave.
The ILO therefore compiled a first report, Maternity Protection at Work, published in December 1997, which was sent to all Member States with a questionnaire about the actual legislation and practices in each country. The questionnaire also asked governments which type of measures they would support to improve conditions for the world's working mothers. These include a possible extension of paid leave to fourteen weeks. The replies have been analysed and the resulting report will form the basis for the deliberations of the ILO Conference in June.
IBFAN groups interested in working at national level on this issue should contact IBFAN-GIFA in Geneva or the WABA Secretariat in Penang. It is important to work with government departments to convince them of the necessity to provide adequate paid maternity leave, both pre- and post-natal, with guarantee of job security. The health arguments are little known because it is the Ministry of Labour rather than the Ministry of Health which is involved in labour legislation. A first step would be to present the arguments about the benefits of breastfeeding for the health of both mother and child to the Ministry of Labour and also to ensure that the Ministry of Health is involved in inter-ministerial discussions. A second step would be to contact trade unions in your country, as they form part of member States delegations to the ILO Conference, with government and employers delegates.
- In January the UK Government announced that maternity leave is going to be extended to 18 weeks - rather than 14 weeks, as part of the Fairness at Work Bill. Greater flexibility will be introduced as both parents will also have a right to 3 months unpaid "parental leave", as well as time off for family problems such as looking after a sick child.
A brief guide to monitoring in the UK
At Baby Milk Action we are alerted to many of the marketing practices of baby milk companies. However, there seems to be some confusion about which of these need to be reported further. We often use the simple answer: 'anything which undermines breastfeeding'. The confusion arises from the difference between the UK Law, which although legally enforceable, is limited, and the International Code and subsequent Resolutions which cover most practices which undermine breastfeeding. It is important to remember that the Code requires that companies adhere to it - in its entirety - regardless of whether it is incorporated into legislation and all the Resolutions carry the authority of the world's highest policy setting body, the World Health Assembly.
The Code (article 11.3 and 11.4) lays responsibility for monitoring and reporting marketing activities with health professionals, organisations such as IBFAN (Baby Milk Action), the Government and the companies themselves. There is currently no routine monitoring by the UK Government, although in the future this may be one of the tasks of the Food Standards Agency. Enforcement of the law in the UK is the responsibility of local Trading Standards Offices and the Environmental Health Department. As explained above, the UK Law has a more limited scope than the Code, so violations of the Code are far more common than contraventions of the Law. For example, a recent TV advertisement for SMA Progress undermines breastfeeding, and is in contravention of the Code, but, according to LACOTS (the body who advise trading standards, through which complaints are chanelled) is not in breach of the Law as advertising of follow-on milks is permitted anywhere.
Reporting a violation
If the UK Government is to live up to its commitment to infant health, anything - words, pictures, gifts etc - which you feel undermines breastfeeding, idealises artificial feeding, or which fails adequately to inform parents or health professionals, should be reported. Some recent examples of marketing practices which may undermine breastfeeding are given in the box below.
|Some examples of marketing practices to look out for:
- a label with a picture of a baby on it
- a company representative giving a post-natal talk to mothers
- an advertisement in a parenting magazine for a follow-on milk
- a company poster for weaning foods in a health clinic
- an advertisement claiming that colic will be stopped in 24 hours
- gifts given to mothers with company logos
- free weaning foods and follow-on milks given out at a roadshow
- reduced price infant formula in a supermarket
Once you've noticed a marketing practice which concerns you, you can:
- note the details - the date, location, publication, who was involved etc.
- send a copy (eg if it is an advertisement in a magazine), or details of it, to your local Trading Standards - you will find their address in your telephone directory. Explain why you think it undermines breastfeeding. (If, at this stage, you are not sure if the marketing practice is in breach of the law or Code you can contact Baby Milk Action for advice. If you are unsure about writing a letter, complaints to Trading Standards can be made over the telephone.)
- send a copy of your letter to the Department of Health to draw their attention to it. The people to notify are Tessa Jowell (Minister for Public Health) and Robert Finch (see below).
- write to the company responsible for the marketing practice. Tell them that you have complained to Trading Standards.
Baby Milk Action, although not able to respond to every case, would like to receive copies of correspondence. Please let us know the outcome of complaints. In many cases Trading Standards have acted quickly and successfully - for example, to get reduced price baby milk removed from shop shelves. In other cases no action has been taken despite the fact that the marketing practice appeared to be in breach of the law.
If you are worried about your name or place of work being disclosed, Baby Milk Action will protect your confidentiality: please send us full details, marking clearly which information is confidential, and we will liaise with the Trading Standards offices on your behalf.
Links between Nutrition and Health,
Department of Health,
Room 613B, Skipton House,
80 London Road,
London, SE1 6LH.
Minister for Public Health,
Complying with the WHO Code? - a Manufacturers' and Distributors' guide
A new IBFAN publication entitled: Complying with the Code?, a Manufacturers' and Distributors' Guide to the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes is available, and is designed to help retailers, distributors, manufacturers, importers and exporters of infant feeding products to understand and comply with the Code.
The guide explains that the Code does not prevent the sale of artificial baby milks but it does place restrictions on commercial promotion - to protect breastfeeding and ensure that information on artificial baby milks is correct.
Available from Baby Milk Action. Contact us for details.