Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Via Dou-la-la. This movie, Formula Fed America, looks really promising as a look into formula marketing practices and their effect on American health. I love me some documentary exposés. As @RaisingBoychick said, I could do without the opening that demonizes being fat as the worst result of formula dependence in this country, but despite that, I'm looking forward to this film. It features interviews with some of the leading lights of breastfeeding support and research, such as Dr. Jack Newman and Katherine Dettwyler, PhD.
Now that you're inspired, wanna do something about deceptive formula-marketing practices?
• Join the Nestlé boycott, and read PhD in Parenting's question-and-answer sessions with Nestlé to educate yourself further about the company's doublespeak around supporting breastfeeding.
• Secondly, if you're using BlogHer Ads, make sure you select the WHO-compliant new options to avoid any advertisements showing for formula or artificial nipples.
I want to put in a word before any formula-feeding mother reading this is offended or saddened, because that's not my intention: What breastfeeding activists are mad at is the companies that are promoting formula in deceptive and unethical ways, violating the World Health Organization's International Code of Marketing of Breast-Milk Substitutes and by using such underhanded techniques as buying breastfeeding-specific search keywords that suggest if you click on a link you'll get breastfeeding support, when in fact you get an ad recommending you switch to formula. If anyone is harassing an individual mother who has, for whatever reasons, chosen formula feeding, that's not cool. I know it stinks the other way around, when a breastfeeding mom is persecuted for breastfeeding in public, so I imagine the shaming goes both ways, and it needs to stop. The point is that formula is not as good as breastmilk; if you have to use it because there are no other options for your baby, then you should, but formula companies should not be pushing it on women indiscriminately. It should not be marketed to or by physicians, and formula marketing needs to stay the heck out of developing countries, where the toll of formula feeding is much greater than in a Westernized country that has clean water and access to health care. That's what this lactivism is about.
All right, breastfeed on, my sisters!