On this page you will find key policy documents that you can use to protect child health – whether you are a health worker, parent, teacher or policy maker….

KEY World Health Assembly DOCUMENTS

The Most important document to understand is the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes that was adopted in 1981.  Since 1981, 20 World Health Assembly  Resolutions have been adopted that clarify, strengthen and extend the Code.  They have the same status as the Code and should be read and acted on together with it.

It is important to remember that the Resolution that adopted the Code, WHA34.22 stressed that: “..the adoption of and adherence to the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes is a minimum requirement and only one of several important actions required in order to protect healthy practices in respect of infant and young child feeding.”

The need for sound information on infant and young child feeding is at the heart of the Code and the eight Resolutions that specifically called for Conflict of Interest safeguards.

Paragraph 44 of the 2003  Global Strategy for Infant and Young Child Feeding outlined just two clear roles for industry: to ensure that their products meet Codex Alimentarius standards; to  monitor their marketing practices according to the principles and aim of the Code and to ensure that their conduct at every level conforms to the Code, subsequent relevant Health Assembly resolutions and national measures that have been adopted to give effect to both. That it!!


CLICK HERE for WHO’s  Framework for Engagement with Non State Actors (FENSA). IBFAN has many concerns about FENSA and the General Work Plan. 2G2H2 31.1. 2018. Baby-Milk-Action-IBFAN-GWP.    IBFAN EB Jan 18

CLICK HERE for the Resolution WHA 69/9 adopted in May 2016 entitled Ending inappropriate promotion of foods for infants and young children

CLICK HERE for the WHO Guidance on ending the inappropriate promotion of foods for infants and young children PDF A69/A/CONF./7 Rev.1       A69/7 Add.1 13 May 2016

Implementation Manual for the Guidance on ending the inappropriate promotion of foods for infants and young children. https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/handle/10665/260137/9789241513470-eng.pdf

CLICK HERE for our summaries and here for the the Baby Feeding Law Group

ICDC compilation of  the Code and Resolutions up to 2018.  2018 Code & Resolutions

Key Codex Alimentarius documents

IBFAN has followed the work of Codex for many years and has attended meetings since 1995 when the WTO recognised its standards  as the bench mark in trade disputes.

You can find many of the Statements, Press Releases and other documents on THIS LINK

Key Codex documents:

CODE OF ETHICS FOR INTERNATIONAL TRADE IN FOOD INCLUDING CONCESSIONAL AND FOOD AID TRANSACTIONS CAC/RCP 20-1979.  take special note of the last para: 4.4 National authorities should be aware of their obligations under the International Health Regulations (2005) with regard to food safety events, including notification, reporting or verification of events to the World Health Organisation (WHO). They should also make sure that the international code of marketing of breast milk substitutes and relevant resolutions of the World Health Assembly (WHA) setting forth principles for the protection and promotion of breast- feeding be observed.

Guidelines on Nutrition Labelling See Annex 2 for  Front of Pack Nutrition Labelling adopted at the Codex Committee on Food Labelling (CCFL) in 2021.   FOPNLFINAL Guidelines

Codex principle on Science


Key Convention on the Rights of the Child documents

Convention on the Rights of the Child 





From the Archives:

Here is a letter from Save the Children, dated 27th February 1995, answering a query about evidence of Nestlé’s marketing.