Monday, October 25, 2010

Nestle-free Week 2010 gets off to a Tweeting good start

It is International Nestlé-Free Week from 25 - 31 October 2010 (press release). A week for people who boycott Nestlé over its baby milk pushing to do more to spread the word and for those who don't boycott to give it a go. This year people are being asked to email Nestlé over its last baby milk marketing strategy: it is claiming its formula 'protects' babies despite the fact that babies who are fed breastmilk substitutes are more likely to become sick than breastfed babies and, in conditions of poverty, more likely to die.

Boycotters in the United States started the ball rolling yesterday with a Twitter Party. Thousands of tweets were entered on the Twitter site using the #noNestle hashtag. People shared information about how Nestlé violates the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes and other measures adopted by the World Health Assembly; how right now Nestlé is undermining breastfeeding by promoting its formula as 'The new "Gold Standard" in infant nutrition'; how Nestlé denies information to parents who use formula that would help them to reduce risks - Nestlé refuses to warn them that powdered formula is not sterile and may contain harmful bacteria. Some people tweeted about the different brands that Nestlé owns. Part of the purpose of the week is to persuade people who think it is too hard to give up Nestlé products to look for alternatives and some tweeters made suggestions of other products to use when boycotting Nestlé. Nestlé-Free Week includes Halloween and campaigners have produced 'Nestlé Free' bags for giving out candy to children knocking on their doors.

The discussion continues on the #noNestle hashtag during International Nestlé-Free Week and beyond. We have adopted a Tweet Ribbon produced last year by a boycotter, which people can add to their Twitter avatar. See:

People are also spreading the word on Facebook by inviting friends to join the event page:

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