Mike Brady | 18.05.2007 09:27 | Health
Now you can see for yourself what is happening in the Philippines. This is a new film from UNICEF Philippines. We are contacting UNICEF to see if we can make this available on DVD. You can register your interest in having a copy - see below. In the meantime you can watch the clips UNICEF has posted today on Youtube. They are gathered together at:
This fresh confirmation of malpractice, further substantiates the documentary evidence gathered by Baby Milk Action and partners in the International Baby Food Action Network. Globally, IBFAN monitoring finds Nestlé to be the worst of the baby food companies, which is why it is targeted with boycott action. There will be a demonstration at Nestlé (UK) HQ on Saturday 19 May 11:00-12:00 and at other sites, shopping centres and Body Shop outlets around the country. See:
We have just a few weeks left in our campaign of support for the Philippines to save the marketing regulations that could stop the type of practices you see in the film. At present the industry is winning and the regulations have been suspended by the Supreme Court. We need your help to make the regulations law.
The clips show how baby food companies undermine breastfeeding, contributing to the unnecessary death and suffering of infants.
You can see the conditions under which mothers are using formula. You can see some of the company promotions. You can hear health workers explaining the pressure they are under to recommend company products. You can listen to recordings given by hidden company representatives, who explain the strategies they are taught to use.
The film also explains how the government has introduced regulations to try to stop the aggressive marketing which undermines breastfeeding. Some mothers are convinced that their babies will be more intelligent if they use formula. If mothers have problems with breastfeeding, the promotion means they are more likely to think switching to formula will give their child the same or better benefits as breastfeeding and so will be less likely to seek support for breastfeeding.
The marketing regulations have been challenged by the Pharmaceutical and Health Care Association of the Philippines (which does not include Nestlé, which has opposed the measure in other ways). They want to carry on with business as usual.
After the US Chamber of Commerce put pressure on the President of the Philippines, the Supreme Court blocked the regulations. Next month the Supreme Court will rule on whether the regulations will stand or be struck down.
We have been campaigning in support of the Philippines and many of you will already have signed our petition of solidarity. If you have not, please do so now. The campaign to date has generated newspaper headlines in the Philippines and other countries. See:
If you would like a DVD of the film if we can make it available, you can register your interest via our on-line Virtual Shop and we will contact you on a first-come, first-served basis with the price once we have set this up. See
Campaigns and Networking Coordinator
Baby Milk Action