Baby milk companies: no promotion, cheaper formula
  • Petitioned Baby milk companies

This petition was delivered to:

Chief Executive Officers
Baby milk companies
Secretary of State for Health
Rt Hon Jeremy Hunt

Baby milk companies: no promotion, cheaper formula

    1. Petition by

      Baby Milk Action

1. We, the undersigned, believe that mothers and the wider public have the right to independent information on pregnancy and baby care. This is available through the health care system and mother support groups.

2. We call for baby milk companies to stop targeting pregnant women and parents with so-called 'educational initiatives' and 'mother and baby clubs'. These are strategies for promoting brand names and gathering contact details and are ultimately paid for by those who use formula.

3. We call on companies to make permanent (not promotional) reductions to the price of formula.

Note: The International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes and subsequent, relevant Resolutions of the World Health Assembly set out how companies can and cannot market formula. The Infant Formula and Follow-on Formula Regulations (2007) and their Guidance Notes are also in force in the four countries of the UK.

Recent signatures


    1. Reached 1,500 signatures
    2. Wyeth found to have misled parents in SMA advertising campaign

      In a national billboard, print and online advertising campaign in March 2012, Wyeth (part of Pfizer, in the process of being purchased by Nestlé) promoted its formula in a series of advertisements showing mothers with young children under headlines: "What's the best milk after Kate's?", "What's the best milk after Lisa's?"etc.

      Following complaints by Baby Milk Action and other groups and individuals, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has ruled the answer is NOT SMA formula.

      In a ruling published today it warns Pfizer not to repeat the advertisements after finding: "the ads misleadingly implied that follow-on milk was the best alternative to breast milk" and "the ads misleading implied that SMA Follow-on milk was superior to other follow-on milks".

      Further details at:

    3. Reached 750 signatures
    4. Wyeth cancels SMA Baby Know How roadshow following protests

      Baby Milk Action learned that Wyeth was planning to begin the SMA Baby Know-How roadshow in the UK on 14 June.

      According to the Public Relations firm organising the events : "The shows are designed to launch SMA’s new products". Wyeth also intended to sign mothers up to its mailing lists. Mothers have complained about the emails they have received in the past and Baby Milk Action is pursuing cases with the regulatory authorities.

      The good news is that the shopping centres scheduled to host the events began to pull out as they received messages in support of the no promotion, cheaper formula campaign. Wyeth announced on 20 June that all events were cancelled - though it said the roadshow was only 'postponed' so Baby Milk Action will continue to monitor.

      As national breastfeeding week is about to start, this is good news for breastfeeding. It is also good news for mothers who use formula as they ultimately fund these events through higher prices.

      See the press release for more info.

    5. Reached 500 signatures
    6. Wyeth to launch SMA Baby Know-How roadshow in the UK

      Many thanks for signing the petition "Baby milk companies: no promotion, cheaper formula".

      Baby Milk Action has learned that this month Wyeth is planning to begin the SMA Baby Know-How roadshow. According to the Public Relations firm organising the events : "The shows are designed to launch SMA’s new products". They will operate as follows:

      "The road-show is called SMA Baby Know-How and will be taking place at various shopping centres around London. The stand will be somewhere mums can get advice, meet other mums, demo a couple of SMA products and sign up to Know-How, our baby club. In addition, we’re going to have a number of competitions and giveaways on offer and will be offering mums a free mummy and baby photo on the stand."

      None of this is really free, of course. It all goes onto the price of the formula.

      A mother who ended up on Wyeth's email list was 'livid' at the message she received from the company when her child was four weeks old. Follow the link for details.

    7. Reached 200 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • imran khawaja MANCHESTER, UNITED KINGDOM
      • about 1 year ago

      To some mothers, opting for baby milk powder is the only way to feed their baby/ies. Lifestyle is not the only reason why a mother would opt for the powder milk but various other reasons such as medical complication or due to baby simply not latching on to mother’s breast are some of the reason which gets no recognition. I would like to stop the Government and the multinational companies capitalising on their inner motives and profits to sell these products at a ridiculous prices but to think for the sake of humanity and provide the platform to struggling parents feeding their babies.

    • Kathleen Jamison BELFAST, UNITED KINGDOM
      • about 1 year ago

      How we treat our most vulnerable says a lot about society.....

    • Rebeca Ley URUAPAN, MEXICO
      • over 1 year ago

      because brestfed babies are better fed!

      • over 1 year ago

      I believe formula companies are taking advantage of mothers not to mention risking babies' health, and making ridiculously large sums of money while doing so.

      • over 1 year ago

      Mothers have a right to choose how to feed their baby. The information about formulas should be available freely, but not via marketing campaigns; better from health.


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