Friday, April 26, 2013

"...despite significant concerns about marketing breast milk substitutes"

Danone has topped the Access to Nutrition Index (ATNI) for its efforts to address issues such as obesity and malnutrition.

Apparently those assessing the performance of the food and beverage manufacturers of the world don’t place much value on compliance with the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes. Danone rates 6.3 and and NestlĂ© 6.0, scoring out of possible 10 in the ATNI Index. Both were applauded for their efforts to address obesity and malnutrition, improving the health profile of their products, making them affordable and promoting them appropriately, yet their breastfeeding policies remain of “significant concern.”

Which means the ATNI score is a complete oxymoron. If these companies are still flouting the MAIF Code, they’re white-anting the most fundamental, preventive health promotion measure that should be the birthright of everyone on this planet! Whatever they do down the track to tackle obesity or malnutrition pales into insignificance. 

The International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN) has branded the report a ”whitewash.” They say the ATNI Report is “a clever tactic that rewards companies for the wrong things!” Absolutely agree with that and the fact that Coca Cola and Friesland-Campina (one of the four largest Infant Formula companies in the world) don’t even rate a 0 on the ATNI scale should be cause for panic (but probably no surprise)! A long time ago, concerned women of the world boycotted NestlĂ© for inappropriate promotion of their breast milk substitutes in developing countries - maybe we need to mount another campaign? 

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