Grrrr Toddler Formula Ad

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Susannah
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Grrrr Toddler Formula Ad

Post by Susannah » Sun Jan 08, 2006 8:48 am

Was looking through a parenting mag the other day and happened upon an ad for toddler formula. Basically it said that breastfeeding is the best way of supplying your baby with calcium and other nutrients, but as you wean onto solid food, it's important to ensure that their nutritional needs continue to be met. The implication being that breastfeeding is no longer good enough and you should be giving our formula as well as or instead of.

Why would continuing breastfeeding all of a sudden be not good enough? And why would I go out and buy something to replace what is better for my child and I get for free? This whole toddler formula business sounds like such a con to me.

Hmmm, I hope I'm not the only one that finds that ads like this get up my nose!! :lol:

motherofseven
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Post by motherofseven » Sun Jan 08, 2006 10:05 am

I too have seen similar adds. One I saw made no mention of b/feeding or f/feeding, just that toddlers need iron and this toddler formula provides it in only 2 cups per day as compared to 30 cups of cows milk.

The second one made much the same claims as the first without mentioning b/feeding or f/feeding.

They actually sound alright and I'm tempted to give them a go. After all my toddler is drinking only 2 cups of milk per day anyway so what could it hurt?

Karen
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bec25
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Post by bec25 » Mon Jan 09, 2006 7:51 am

Susannah I agree totally!

My husband says I am a conspiracy theorist but I firmly believe that toddler formula is simply a way for the formula companies to get around the guidelines for advertising baby milk substitutes.

I was absolutely disgusted to receive a sachet of toddler formula with my baby bundle from the hospital :evil: . It even had a use by date only about 6mths after bubby was born so I could not possibly use it for a toddler. I can not believe that a govt health department would allow such propaganda.

Come to think about it I was pretty disgusted with the whole baby bundle thing. I know that they use it as a vehicle to distribute baby care material (shoving SIDS booklets etc in along with the 'goodies') but I think that being handed them by a midwife gives weight to the advertising material inside. I found that mine had lots of advertisements for really expensive 'necessities' that just made me fume. One magazine was purely a shopping article full of 100% paid advertisements staged as editorial comment.

Personally I think that our state govt should be rethinking this approach (and also Susannah to get back to your point, toddler 'formula' should be covered by the same marketing requirements as normal formula, the statement that 'breastmilk is best for babies' is insidious brainwashing of the worst kind!!!

Bec

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Post by Kathryn » Mon Jan 09, 2006 8:41 am

My husband says I am a conspiracy theorist but I firmly believe that toddler formula is simply a way for the formula companies to get around the guidelines for advertising baby milk substitutes.
I agree with this, I don't know the name of any baby formula, but if I were a mother contemplating buying formula (which I am definately not) I would probably buy the formula whose name I knew. Even now I am thinking of this, the music for that damn TV ad for toddler formula is going through my head.
Lukas William, born 14 Feb 05, breastfed 2 years, 6 months

James Thomas , born 23 June 09, breastfed 2 years 7 months

Alice Paige, born 13 May 2012

Susannah
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Post by Susannah » Mon Jan 09, 2006 1:01 pm

My husband says I am a conspiracy theorist
:lol: Bec, I'm a bit the same way...my hubby just rolls his eyes when I get going! I do think you are right about the advertising guidelines though, and it seems to me like the WHO guidelines for breastfeeding (which I think are great by the way) are also an excellent excuse for formula companies to promote the extended use of their product. And putting formula sachets with a 6 month use by on them in a baby bundle is just terrible - if that's not advertising their product I don't know what is.

jessjay
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Post by jessjay » Mon Jan 09, 2006 2:21 pm

Bec, my husband IS a conspiracy theorist and has got into many arguments in the workplace about advertising in general, especially baby products! At least I don't have to justify my theories to him (MIL yes!

There was quite a good post about this on the previous pre-crashed forum as made up toddler formula was being given out at a parents and babies expo. I did read an article about the goody bags & the stuff used in hospitals saying that it is the best advertising for a company, that most new mums will continue to use what is seen in a healthcare setting.

Personally I am against the use of toddler formulas, firstly as it is normalising bottle feeding and sneakily getting around the WHO guidelines which Australia adheres to, but mostly because it is saying that breastfeeding past 12 months is unnecessary which I am sure many on this forum would heartily disagree with (myself included). Liz Ellis wants a good swift kick for putting her name to the advertising!

Jess
Mum to Evie (12/1/05)
STILL breastfeeding...

Maria
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Post by Maria » Mon Jan 09, 2006 5:57 pm

Agree totally.

The WHO Code does actually cover all types of breastmilk substitutes - it doesn't distinguish between so-called "follow-on" formulas and infant formulas. It also covers feeding equipment, teats, baby food and juices.

But even though Australia is a signatory to the code, we only honour a small part of it. The industry's response to Australia becoming a signatory to the code is the very diluted "Marketing in Australia of Infant Formulas", which only applies to formula designed for babies less than 1 year of age.

(I thought I'd post this because it took me a while to figure this out.

Yes it is infuriating, especially as the whole "you might not be able to breastfeed" strategy comes from those with commercial interests in mothers not being successful at breastfeeding.

While it's great to vent one's spleen in a forum like this, our posts won't change anything. So write to your MP to express your views today.

Of course companies of all types will try to entice us to part with our money, and we all need to be aware to make good decisions, but putting the health of babies and young children at risk (and costing the health system millions of dollars) is another thing altogether.

Maria

ps It's not a conspiracy theory, it's something much more real and powerful. It's unethical marketing.

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Post by jennylee » Mon Jan 09, 2006 6:26 pm

hi all,

For those interested, information about the MAIF agreement is available on the governments website http://www.health.gov.au/internet/wcms/ ... apmaif.htm

and if you do come across any breaches of the agreement you can obtain an incident report form from our website advocacy section http://www.breastfeeding.asn.au/advocacy/

:D
Australian Breastfeeding Association
http://www.breastfeeding.asn.au

motherofseven
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Post by motherofseven » Tue Jan 10, 2006 7:14 am

I'm a little confused. I thought "toddlers" were over 12mths of age and more toward the 18mth mark. The toddler formula adds I saw all had older children drinking from cups - not bottles. Don't get me wrong I'm not in support of formula advertising BUT these adds are not telling mums to wean their babies off the breast nor that breastmilk is no longer good enough. When I said I might give them a try I wasn't implying that I would instantly stop b/feeding my 19mth old and replace his b/feeds with toddler formula. What I meant was that he is drinking cow's milk - designed for calves, not infants - and that maybe this formula would be better designed to meet his needs. Formula feeding mums need to be informed too. And lets face it the media has and always will be the best way to keep them up-to-date. It's worked for us b/feeding mums.

Karen.

P.S. - I have b/fed all of my children and have always said that I would have to hate my baby a great deal to ever bottle feed them when I have the ability to b/feed. Which is why I failed to become a counsellor.
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Susannah
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Post by Susannah » Wed Jan 11, 2006 2:29 pm

Hi Karen,

I can't comment on any of the other formula ads that are out there, only the one that I originally posted about. It said in the same breath breastfeeding is specifically designed to cater for all the nutritional needs of a baby, however toddlers need a more of a variety of nutrients and vitamins. IMHO, this ad is sneakily telling mums that the only way their toddler will get these is by drinking their formula, that they will not get them by breastfeeding and eating a balanced diet. And it specified 12 months of age. It is after all written by a company with a vested interest in babies/toddlers weaning from the breast as early as possible. I must say though that I'd have less of a problem with it if it didn't mention breastfeeding at all as I don't think that formula companies should be commenting on it except to say that breastfeeding is better for babies and that ABA are the people to talk to about breastfeeding problems.

I definitely agree with you that formula feeding mums need to be informed and that the media is the best way to do it. It is a shame though that so much of the information comes from the companies who produce the product and stand to gain from it's use.

However, if you think toddler formula sounds OK and want to use it you should give it a go - I never thought from your post that you would be stopping breastfeeding to replace it with toddler formula. I personally wouldn't use it because I don't think Megan needs it, but who am I to tell you what is best for your 19 month old? :)

All the best.

motherofseven
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Post by motherofseven » Mon Jan 16, 2006 9:46 am

I've taken the time to check out one of the websites of a major formula company and found this interesting agreement that you had to agree to before being allowed into the formula section in the 'our products' section-

Mandatory Statement
Breastfeeding is best for babies, and provides the ideal balanced diet and protection against illness. During pregnancy and after delivery, a mother`s diet should contain sufficient key nutrients. Professional guidance can be sought on diet and the preparation for and maintenance of breastfeeding. Infant formula is intended to replace breast-milk when mothers do not breastfeed. A decision not to breast-feed, or to introduce partial bottle-feeding, could reduce the supply of breast-milk. Once reduced, it is difficult to re-establish. Infant formula should be prepared and used as directed. Unnecessary or improper use, such as the use of unboiled water, unboiled bottles or incorrect dilution may present a health hazard. Social and financial implications, such as the preparation requirements and the cost of providing formula until 12 months of age, should be considered when choosing how to feed infants.

By clicking on the "I agree" below, you are confirming that you have chosen to formula feed your child and you are accepting that xxx is supplying this information at your individual request, for informational or educational purposes.
Breastfeeding is best for babies, and provides the ideal balanced diet and protection against illness.
Can't argue with that! But this....
Once reduced, it is difficult to re-establish.
Where do they get their information?!?

Susannah, I would like you to pm me the details of the ad you saw so I can check it out. The name of the mag would be good. I think that mentioning b/feeding in a formula ad is wrong because the hidden implications can give new mums or even unsure mums the wrong impression.

Karen.
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Susannah
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Post by Susannah » Mon Jan 16, 2006 11:17 am

Have PMed you with the details of the ad Karen.

I imagine they have to have this mandatory statement to comply with the guidelines for advertising formula for babies under 12 months old?? I would think that if they don't do this they would be advertising their product.

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