Why Multi Stakeholder Partnerships are so problematic

The need for sound information on infant and young child feeding is at the heart of the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes  and the 20  World Health Assembly  Resolutions that have been passed since 1981.   Since 1996, eight Resolutions have specifically called for Conflict of Interest safeguards and  Paragraph 44 of the 2003  Global Strategy for Infant and Young Child Feeding also outlined the two clear roles for industry.

Baby Milk Action is a founding member of the  Conflicts of Interest Coalition launched at the UN General Assembly on NCDs  in 2011. The Statement is endorsed by 162 organisations representing over 2000 NGOs who endorsed it and have used it to inform their policies.

Patti Rundall interviewed about Multi-stakeholder partnerships for “Future of our Food” ERSC seminar  30 March 2015 at Centre for Food Policy, London.

Who has the power in a Multi-stakeholder world?  2021 Presentation for Australia National University, Crawford School of Public Policy


When SUN casts a Shadow The human rights risks of multi-stakeholder partnerships: the case of Scaling up Nutrition (SUN). February 2020


The Bill Gates Problem by Tim Schwab


IBFAN’s Note of dissent to the Gates Monitoring Mechanism  (May 2017)

Protecting infant health: IBFAN stands up to a new initiative by the  Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

A few years ago, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) turned its attention towards infant and young child feeding, a badly underfunded and neglected area of public health and nutrition. As traditional government donors pay little attention to this crucial area, it may seem like good news. However, when BMGF’s supported initiatives disregard basic principles that ensure the independence, integrity and credibility of public health policy making, those believing in primacy of human rights may need to sit up and pay attention. IBFAN believes that the Global Monitoring Mechanism (GMM), a new project supported by BMGF, calls for such attention and calls for it now, before irreversible steps have been taken.   For more  Click here



IBFAN’s Counter-Call to WHO and UNICEF to STOP 10 year-licence to harm children (July and Nov 2020).

Baby Food industry refuses to follow the Code – industry-inspired Call to Action is concluded (March 23 2021)

Why the Nutrition for Growth (N4G) Initiative is a threat to child health (May 2021). 

EU Platform for Action

NGOs Leave Platform for Action 2.7.19

Civil Society abandons Platform John Ryan of the EU Commission Confirms closure. (27/07/2021) of the Closure of EU Platform for Action on Diet Physical Activity and Health

2016 Multistakeholderism Dialogue or engineering of consent? Opportunities and risks of talking to industry Judith Richter

2017 Interference in public health policy : Baby food and Tobacco tactics. World Nutrition Issue.  Vol 8 No 2 (2017) Copyright (c) 2017 Sabrina Ionata Granheim, Katrin Engelhardt, Patti Rundall, Stella Bialous, Alessandro Iellamo, Barrie Margetts


How Conflicts of interest distorts policy making

In 2000, our exposé of the COI  in the EU’s Scientific Committee for Food  (SCF), backed by Glenys Kinnock MEP and 50 NGOs,  prompted the European Commission to bring in rules on transparency and Conflict of Interest.  The SCF was closed down and replaced by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) with the aim of  protecting EU scientific advice from commercial and political influence.

Clamour for action to bolster Union scientists’ credibility. European.Voice. Renée Cordes, Jan 2000 vol 6.no.2.

Scientists bow to call for more transparency.,  European Voice, Renée Cordes, 16-22 March, 2000, Vol 6, No 11.

Click here for a chronology of our work to improve legislation in Europe.

  • Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published.