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“Breast-Washing”: Enfamil Offers Free Breastfeeding Support Kit

Posted Aug 04 2009 6:51pm

You’ve heard of “Greenwashing.” My favorite posts on this matter are at The Good Human.

But what about a fraudulent “breastfeeding support kit” from a formula company? Wow! Ain’t nothing like finding this crap offer during World Breastfeeding Week!

Today’s specimen: Enfamil. It’s offering “support” in the form of formula samples, among other things:

A sample of the NEW Enfamil® PREMIUM™ with Triple Health Guard™, our closest formula to breast milk, should you choose to supplement.

The “closest formula to breastmilk,” you say? You mean it comes out warm in human skin and chock full of immune system boosters that can’t be replicated in a factory? Gee whiz! New mothers struggling to breastfeed: Sign up now! Wait–no. Here are the considerable problems with this:

  • Breastfeeding mothers need support, especially the first time around. But a box containing pills and powders is hardly the educational tool it’s purported to be.
  • There are support groups, counselors, discussion boards, and real live doctors should you need help.
  • “If you should choose to supplement” terminology. I wonder how many feminists they polled before they came up with that wording. Want freedom ladies? Freedom of “choice”? Enfamil can help. Puh-lease. Most families who choose to use formula use it after struggling with breastfeeding. Let’s not make it sound like decisions over infant health is comparable to, say, picking out an outfit.
  • Formula companies are not here to help you breastfeed. Period. Or, as Annie at PhD in Parenting put it:

A breastfeeding support kit from a formula company is like a vegetarianism support kit from a pig farmer.

This “breastfeeding support kit” is available not only during WBW, but year-round. However, the Free Stuff Times should probably consider the appropriateness of posting this freebie this week (or month, or year, or ever! ).

And let’s again remember the words of reknowned researcher Dr. Michael Kramer, who has advised the WHO and Unicef:

I’m not aware of any studies that have observed any health benefits of formula feeding. That’s important, and any mother weighing the benefits of breastfeeding vs formula feeding needs to know that.

You’re smart people. Let’s not fall for this kind of “support.”

Still not sure? Check out my post on the “ Formula is Voldemort ” study, in which it was shown that researcher routinely avoid using the word “formula”in studies that compare the health effects of breastfeeding versus formula-feeding. Instead of saying that formula has negative health effects, they choose to say that breastfeeding protects against these problems.

Image: brokinhrt2 on Flickr under a Creative Commons License.

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