By Angela Cahill on behalf of IBFAN Ireland
A look back at some activities in Ireland 2014 that violate the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes. Code violations include manufacturers of breastmilk substitutes using the health care system as a promotional platform. People have the right to access quality healthcare services and information free of commercial influence. Health workers should be protected from commercial influence which may distort their judgement and decisions.
See links below for guidelines on sponsorship and conflicts of interest, and information for health care workers regarding the Code:
- Baby Feeding Law Group Ireland: BFLGITheCodeforHCWsApril2015.docx
- International Baby Food Action Network position statement on Sponsorship and conflicts of interest.
Unethical sponsorship in 2014 of various initiatives include the First 1000 Days campaign ( a Danone initiative launched in 2013), Ireland’s Pregnancy and Baby Fairs ( SMA holds the title sponsor since 2010) and Barnardo’s Big Toddle (branded by C&G since 2013, prior to that Danone)
The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation shared this non Code compliant event with their membership
Nestlé SMA Professional Know-How hosts a “Spring Neonatal Meeting” for HCPs at the National Maternity Hospital, Dublin. Note: NMH is supported by an “unrestricted educational grant” from SMA nutrition
To be in with a chance to win a Cow & Gate hamper, members of the C&G Facebook page were invited to watch a TV advert for growing up milk (GUM) and to then answer the following question; “How many beakers a day of our growing up milk do we recommend for your toddler?”
Cow & Gate sponsored Big Toddle for Barnardos children’s charity. Once registered Barnardos send out a “free” fun pack including branded hats and medals, the entire cost of the pack and materials covered by Cow & Gate. How kind, and in return Danone get to market their brand name and logo through gaining direct access to mothers of young children via Barnardos.
Some shelf talkers:
“Their future starts today,” promotion of Aptamil’s Pronutra product in the Sunday Times Newspaper:
A collection of ”freebies”received from one of the SMA Know-How sponsored Pregnancy and Baby Fairs:
Danone jump on the Baby Fair bandwagon. In the first image below Danone use a bottle as a symbol to promote the sponsored event, this idealises/normalises bottlefeeding whilst undermining breastfeeding. Note: this event never took place for reasons unknown.
Eumom Pack (a “free”gift provided to mothers of newborns) included a MAM bottle. Does that logo look similar to the C&G logo?
Aptamil branded leaflet spotted at a GP surgery targets pregnant women – a marketing strategy to create brand recognition and brand loyalty:
Freebies at a mother and baby event in Dublin included an Aptamil (Danone) branded breastfeeding support leaflet, a Cow & Gate (Danone) Iron Rich Recipe Booklet and Danone’s First 1000 Days recipe book.
Danone and Nestlé target expectant and new parents through advertising in magazines. First image: Expectant parents are encouraged to register with Danone’s online Aptaclub website to receive a ”free” frame for baby scan.
Promoting an unnecessary product at the Dublin Horse Show:
Nestlé through their brand name SMA targeting parents and toddlers through a Creche/Pre-school. They offer to speak with parents and answer queries on toddler nutrition whilst offering a “free”carton of GUM to every parent, and a ‘guide’ to having a healthy balanced diet…
Huge billboard promoting the SMA Know-How sponsored pregnancy and baby fair at the RDS in Dublin:
Nestlé hosts 8 free webinars for HCPs:
Aptamil branded Height Chart displayed in a GPs surgery:
SMA Branded note-pads distributed to HCPs via the Healthcare system:
Image taken from a Mother and Baby Magazine. SMA “You’re doing great” advertisement for FOM – Claims to ” support ‘normal cognitive development and ‘normal’ growth and development.”
Minister for Health Dr James Reilly appears to be endorsing a ”free” Aptamil branded child immunisation tracker:
Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Simon Coveney T.D. proudly launches “Green Love” infant formula in China. “This new entry into the finished infant formula market in China is good news for their suppliers and like investments in other Irish dairy processing facilities bodes well for jobs and investment in rural Ireland in the coming years”. “Ireland with its strong focus on innovation and nutrition, supported by a sustainable production model and strong Irish Government support will play a key role in supplying the Chinese market with safe, nutritious and innovative milk products for many years to come.” For more see here
Nestlé hosts an evening seminar for HCPs which includes a buffet dinner :
Nestlé partner with Irish Autism Action (IAA) see here
Spotted in TK Maxx pre-Christmas sales. A pair of baby pyjamas branded with a bottle and text “In Milk We Trust.”
Rounding it up with an SMA branded Christmas Memories Hub competition in partnership with Smyths Toys :