Friday, September 14, 2007

Nestle boycott on Facebook and Mead Johnson expose on the internet

A couple of internet items on people taking action. The Nestlé boycott on Facebook and protests about Mead Johnson sponsorship at the University of North Carolina in the US.

There are several groups on Facebook discussing the boycott. I've added a Baby Milk Action one as a place to provide information on our campaigns. See:

Meanwhile in North Carolina, students have been protesting over a total of $450,000 in grants from Mead Johnson being made to the school during the next three years for research and speaker fees. The Mead Johnson Center for Excellence in Children's Nutrition has been established at the school.

Brook Colgan, a second-year graduate student in the Department of Maternal and Child Health, told the Daily Tar Heel student newspaper: "I really feel that had there been a thorough investigation of the track record of Mead Johnson, they would feel differently."

The paper also reports: Nutrition professor Linda Adair said the protesting students have not properly researched the company's background, basing their evidence on studies that lack support. "Our understanding is that Mead Johnson is conducting itself in a very ethical way."

Ho hum.

I posted the following comment:

This article only scratches the surface. Mead Johnson promotes its formulas around the world with idealizing claims that are not substantiated by independent reviews of the evidence. See details on my blog about the Nestlé boycott and other baby food companies:

Mead Johnson is a member of the Pharmaceutical and Health Care Association of the Philippines (PHAP) which has taken the Ministry of Health to court to try to have regulations for the marketing of baby foods struck down. It promotes its formula Alacta in the Philippines. Although the biggest ingredient in Mead Johnson's infant formula, Alacta, is corn syrup solids, it claims to contain 'FibreCal' and 'DHA precursor with Brain nutrients'. See:

For a film from UNICEF Philippines showing the impact of promotion by Mead Johnson and others (which can be viewed on line) see:

The PHAP has advertised in the Philippines in support of its attack on the law. The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food has called these advertisements: "misleading, deceptive, and malicious in intent". See:

I work for Baby Milk Action which, as part of the International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN), monitors the baby food industry around the world against marketing standards adopted by the World Health Assembly.

Let's hope those who make the decisions will click on a few links.

No comments: