What do we think of Kirstie Allsopp's link with SMA?

(346 Posts)
hunkermunker Thu 10-Jul-08 20:41:35

I am slightly less than utterly unimpressed You?

And yes, of course, it's her decision, yada-yada, but what a shit decision it was.

Kirstie, I knock walls down in your general direction.

cmotdibbler Thu 10-Jul-08 20:45:10

Hmmm. And I bet its shite advice - all you need to know in the first 48 hours ? Keep them close and cuddled, stay in bed together, and let them feed as much as they want. Don't stress, and don't do housework. Bet thats not what they say.

youareamazing Thu 10-Jul-08 20:47:57

Message withdrawn

hunkermunker Thu 10-Jul-08 20:48:55

Yep, I bet it makes it all really complicated - all cleaning cord stumps in bat tears and ensuring you use a separate piece of cotton wool for each eyelash [overcomplicates]

andiem Thu 10-Jul-08 20:50:15

very unimpressed still some people will do anything for money

littlepinkpixie Thu 10-Jul-08 20:51:35

Maybe lots of stuff about how while we all know "breast is best" mustnt forget how difficult breastfeeding is, must be very careful what you eat, better have some SMA on hand just in case you arent "enjoying" breastfeeding.

Snaf Thu 10-Jul-08 20:52:16

Oh, Kirstie, you're no longer my favourite property-porn blow-up posh totty. Will have to seek solace in the Beeny norks, I guess.

Perhaps she Just Didn't Have Enough Milk (TM) to feed that enormo-sprog, huh? Huh? Because we all know it's impossible to keep them satisfied on breastmilk if your baby is over 8lb... hmm

lackaDAISYcal Thu 10-Jul-08 20:57:54

ooh, I thought she would have been a possible BFing champion sad

GrinningGorilla Thu 10-Jul-08 20:59:22

Snaf have you ever tried keeping a enormous baby (and I don't mean a small 9 pounder) satisfied on breastmilk alone? In my experience (3 times enormous babies) I was strongly advised by the health visitor and the breast feeding specialist to top up with artificial because they were not getting enough from me and losing too much weight.

you mean like this pile of horse shit:

“Do I have to change my diet if I’m breast feeding?”
As long as your diet is healthy, balanced and varied, and you eat regularly, your body will be able to produce top quality, nourishing breast milk for your baby.

Have at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables (fresh, dried, frozen, tinned or juiced) a day.
Drink lots of fluids – at least 6 - 8 glasses a day.
Boost your energy levels with starchy foods such as bread, pasta, rice and potatoes.
Make sure there’s plenty of fibre in your diet, such as wholegrain bread and cereals, as some women experience bowel problems after having a baby.
Drink at least one pint of pasteurised milk a day (or use in puddings, custards, sauces and/or on cereals).
If you don’t like milk, increase your intake of dairy products: one carton of yoghurt or an ounce of hard cheese provides a similar amount of calcium to a third of a pint of pasteurised milk.
Eat at least two portions of lean meat, chicken, fish, eggs (well-cooked), beans or pulses a day.
Take a supplement containing 10 μg of vitamin D every day – your healthcare professional will be able to give your more information about this.
Peanuts, if you or the baby’s father, or either of your families, have a history of allergy you may wish to avoid eating food containing peanuts while breast feeding.
Fish is a great addition to a healthy diet but limit oil-rich fish (such as salmon, mackerel, herring, fresh tuna or sardines) to two servings a week and avoid eating more than one portion a week of shark, swordfish and marlin.
Limit your intake of coffee, tea and cola as caffeine can pass into breast milk and upset your baby.
Keep alcohol intake to a minimum."


beansprout Thu 10-Jul-08 21:00:55

I fed a 10lb 5oz baby on b/milk for 7 months. hmm

WilfSell Thu 10-Jul-08 21:00:56

wot's enormous then? I had 3 pretty biguns and all were exclusively BF...

lackaDAISYcal Thu 10-Jul-08 21:01:54

My friend is still feeding her 13 months old DS and he was a toddler 11 lbs when he was born smile

beansprout Thu 10-Jul-08 21:03:06

Actually, I fed him for over 3 years. The exclusive bit was 7 months.

Snaf Thu 10-Jul-08 21:04:04

GG, I haven't personally had an enormous baby (ds was a mere 8lb 6oz at birth) but I have supported many, many women to exclusively breastfeed large babies.

I can't comment on your individual case, of course - it may well be that that was appropriate advice for you. Doesn't mean it's the same for everyone, 'tis all.

andiem Thu 10-Jul-08 21:04:37

I fed one on the 98th centile exclusively for 6 months and have just stopped feeding him now at 1 he hasn't had any formula hmm

WilfSell Thu 10-Jul-08 21:04:49

Thing is, whatever they were at birth, some of us still managed to exclusively BF 6 months later, when they must be drinking MUCH more, so I'm not at all convinced by the size matters argument.

My first and third were monsters (9lb15 and 9lb7) and both became very rotund on my milk fountains within a month or so. Fat little buddhas grin. No issue at the start or end of exclusive BF with their size and their satisfaction.

lackaDAISYcal Thu 10-Jul-08 21:05:31

i was readiing the sma stuff and thought they were at least ticking the boxes until i got to that part.

do you think they are tapping into the junk food culture by convincing folks with a penchant for maccyDs, KFC and pizzas that they best not even bother trying?

Notanexcitingname Thu 10-Jul-08 21:06:16

and presumably he didn't stay 10lb 5 oz, beansprout wink

<throws her three friends who all exclusive b/fed 10lb + babies for 6 month into the ring>

GrinningGorilla Thu 10-Jul-08 21:06:18

All over 11lb, biggest 12lb 3. Trying to get a baby that big going on breast is almost impossible especially if you don't have very good milk supply. I was completely relieved to be told to top up by "professionals".

beansprout Thu 10-Jul-08 21:06:40

The size argument is stupid. If we can grow babies that big, our bodies can feed them.

If we have big babies were are told to give them formula, if they are small we are told we should give them formula, etc etc hmm

hunkermunker Thu 10-Jul-08 21:06:48

Christ, Harpsi - I lived on whole cheese and onion quiches and M&S triple chocolate breakfast cereal when I was first feeding DS1 (wtf was the matter with me - why couldn't I cook anything else?!). Poor, undernourished thing that he was...not!

That stuff about healthy diet while bfing pisses me off - it's all part of the "you must be middle class to breastfeed, after all, only the middle classes eat oranges and fish with heads and scales still on" bullshit.

Out of interest, did anybody see the backlash on comments in the (sorry) DM for Charlotte Church becomming a breastfeeding champion?

I was surprised at the comments that were on the site.

GrinningGorilla Thu 10-Jul-08 21:11:43

Beansprout, why is the size arguement "stupid". A baby of 6lb is going to feed a lot less than a baby of 12lb. Our body's are not limitless, there is a limit to how much milk we can physically produce, there is not a non stop endless supply.

beansprout Thu 10-Jul-08 21:12:53

There pretty much is, it works on supply and demand.

LaVieEnRose Thu 10-Jul-08 21:13:26

Yes Kirstie may you rot in hell for being in cahoots with a drug baron and pushing heroin onto defenceless babies and their stupid mothers. hmm

Oh hang on, its only formula. So.... what is the problem exactly???

cmotdibbler Thu 10-Jul-08 21:13:41

DS was on the 99.8th percentile till a year old and was exclusively bf for 6 months (he was 6lb 5oz at 35 weeks and well over 10lbs by his due date). My brother was 10lb 11oz and exc bf for 4 months (this was 38 years ago though) - no formula though.

lulumama Thu 10-Jul-08 21:13:53

i thought there was a limitless supply.. hence mothers can feed twins, triplets, tandem feed a newborn and toddler...

sure, some babies will feed a hell of a lot more, but the best way for supply to meet demand is to put baby to breast as often as possible, and try to avoid topping up especially in the early weeks, as it can interfere with establishing supply

i think we are generally surprised at how much a baby , especially a new born, needs to feed

GrinningGorilla Thu 10-Jul-08 21:14:18

Not when you only have one boob that produces milk and your baby is taking roughly 8 ounces every 1 1/2 hours. I'm afraid it doesn't work to that extent.

BouncingTurtle Thu 10-Jul-08 21:14:36

I hate fish. I hate shellfish.
Ds seems to be doing alright thus far!
That diet is simply what EVERYONE should be following - i.e. a healthy diet to maintain weight and to feel well - it's not specifically for bf mums!
Well except I think for the pint of milk - and certainly the Vit D supplement is unnecessary unless you are a vampire grin
Except for the peanut bit I guess... though I ate Snickers bars through pg and still do!

InTheDollshouse Thu 10-Jul-08 21:14:46

Why would a 6lb baby feed less than a 12lb baby? The 6lb baby would likely feed more frequently, having a smaller stomach and all.

hunkermunker Thu 10-Jul-08 21:14:52

GG, I read a theory we produce enough milk for twins initially (hence the engorgement in the early days) and once your breasts work out you're only feeding one baby, they adjust accordingly.

How would people successfully breastfeed twins and triplets (and they do) if your body's not designed to produce enough milk for an 11lb baby, a baby that your body grew?

Can this thread not degenerate into how much milk babies of various sizes need, please - it's for slating Kirstie A grin

BouncingTurtle Thu 10-Jul-08 21:15:30

Who is the Kirstie Allsop? Never heard of her?

Snaf Thu 10-Jul-08 21:15:59

There kind of is a non-stop endless supply - if that supply has been given the chance to establish properly in the first place and there are no physiological reasons that might limit it.

It's just supply and demand - a baby that feeds a lot stimulates the breasts to produce a lot.

lackaDAISYcal Thu 10-Jul-08 21:16:05

GG, many big babies naturally drop down the centiles until the hit and stay on the right one for them. Clearly anecdotal evidence here shows that feeding big babies is possible, sometimes with help and support and sometimes naturally.

sorry this wasn't your experience and you didn't get more support to help you get your supply well enough established to BF exclusively.

FAQ Thu 10-Jul-08 21:16:22

but GG - even 6lb babies reach 12lb (and more) at some stage - some quicker than others (in the case of my - exclusively BF - DS1)

lackaDAISYcal Thu 10-Jul-08 21:16:57

BT....the "location, location, location" presenter.

hf128219 Thu 10-Jul-08 21:17:07

She needs the money??

lulumama Thu 10-Jul-08 21:17:12

gg, it sounds like you had a very difficult time

i thikn th epoint is, not how much babies need to breastfeed, but that here is anotehr sleb endorsement of formula...

GrinningGorilla Thu 10-Jul-08 21:18:43

My only opinion of Kirsty Alsop is that she is very good at looking at houses for other people. Goodnight ladies. Have a good evening.wink

Snaf Thu 10-Jul-08 21:19:44

Night, gg.

I don't want to slag off Kirstie. She has nice posh shoes and uses parasols. But I fear she has Let Me Down.

beansprout Thu 10-Jul-08 21:19:51

Ok, back to the point - Kirstie, shame on you, but then again, what did I expect from a Tory? (I know that is not logical but it makes sense in my world grin)

GG there is a mother who breastfed sextuplets.

so erm, I think that it can be done. boobs are wonderful things

beansprout Thu 10-Jul-08 21:21:57

sextuplets? Wow, that puts ds2's current growth spurt into perspective!

and actually there is a non-stop endless supply. your body is constantly producing milk. and if you feed more and more then it will produce more and more.

I never get why people say they can't feed their "big" newborn.
I exclusively fed a giant 20lb 6 month old

andiem Thu 10-Jul-08 21:22:33

yes it doesn't surprise me she is in cahoots with DC so I suppose SMA shouldn't be that shocking grin

kiskidee Thu 10-Jul-08 21:35:51

GG, women can feed twins or triplets, etc from birth without supplementation. Our bodies are primed to produce a lot of milk right off the bat because our hormones doesn't know if we had 1 or 4 babies.

Likewise irregardless of weight, on day 1, a baby's stomach is the size of a shooter marble, it can hold about 5-7 ml of colostrum.

A 6 pound baby does not have a stomach that is 33% smaller than that of a 9lb baby just because he weighs 33% less.

I cannot say what your babies needed because I don't know your situation but more often than not, babies need to be kept close and fed as often as they cue for a feed. In the first few days, in order to bring your milk in, it can be quite often. But the more often they are fed, the earlier it seems to bring your milk in. sorry if you already know this. just thinking of the others who may be reading and may be curious too.

MsDemeanor Thu 10-Jul-08 21:36:43

So, not Lactation, Lactation, Lactation then?

andiem Thu 10-Jul-08 21:37:32

lol md

BouncingTurtle Thu 10-Jul-08 21:40:16

Cheers Daisy - never watch it.
Far too busy MNing to watch daytime TVgrin
Like to know what's happening to my grammar.

There is a lady at my bumps & babies class who is exbf her dd who was nearly 11lb born and grew at a great rate of knots - she is off the top of the growth charts! Obviously her mum did make enough milk, though we used to joke she must have been taking steroids wink
GG - the past is the past, your three kids, I assume, are doing great. You were given advice by health professionals, who are supposed to know what they are talking about, so of course you take it! Sadly it turns out that some of these professionals can be as badly informed as the average joe on the street. Believe me I know!

Sallypoo Thu 10-Jul-08 21:46:15

So has anyone actually watched the SMA video that Kirstie introduces, or are we all just slagging her off before seeing it?

My husband and I watched it 5 months late admittidly, but actually it didn't over complicate anyting and didn't ram formula down your throats.

Oh, and btw, not all of us are able to exclusively breastfeed so the content was very useful.

I suspect that Kirstie has enough money for this not to have been her only motivation. Just thought I'd give a different point of view. hmm

lackaDAISYcal Thu 10-Jul-08 21:55:48

pmsl MsD grin

<whispers to BT>...tis prime time C4 programme!!

sallypoo, I think it's about the subtle undermining of BFing that a celebrity endorsement like this does, given how obsessed we are with clebrity in this country.

And call me a cynic, but I don't think a company that manufactures formula milk has too much of a vested interest in promoting exclusive BFing, regardless of how unbiased their marketing bumph comes across.

well actually about 1% of women are not able to breastfeed.
the vast, vast majority are able to. if given the correct help and support.

which I don't think includes kirstie allsopp telling you which formula to use "just in case you can't breastfeed" hmm

how is this not advertising??????

hunkermunker Thu 10-Jul-08 22:00:39

Sallypoo, I would be slating anyone who got into bed with a formula manufacturer.

They're not doing it to help women, they're doing it to increase their market share by making it seem as though they care about you and your baby.

Worked a treat, I'd say sad

and quite frankly, I don't really need some c-list celeb telling me how to look after my baby.
load of twaddle.

HonoriaGlossop Thu 10-Jul-08 22:10:44

but it's pointless saying that about 1% of women are not able to breastfeed and the rest are with help and support

We live in the real world where that help and support is non-existent for many.

It is fighting the wrong battle to come on internet sites and get all up in arms about formula advertising. You'll never win this battle against multi million pound corporations - not directly. You need to be out there volunteering your expertise to provide the help and support at the coalface that will stop women who don't want to use formula but feel they can't manage BF so give up! That's the only way the battle will be won.

hunkermunker Thu 10-Jul-08 22:17:07

HG, without formula advertising, breastfeeding support would get better more quickly.

Because more unbiased information would be available about formula, healthcare professionals wouldn't have their training scuppered by sponsored by formula companies events, etc.

Please don't tell people who know what they're talking about that they don't know what they're doing.

And don't assume that people who post on forums such as this aren't doing anything wrt breastfeeding support in RL. It's annoying. And wrong.

DaisySteiner Thu 10-Jul-08 22:24:03

Not too happy with Kirstie, but the person who should really be receiving our opprobrium is the midwife who is being paid by SMA to promote formula. She really should know better angry

HonoriaGlossop Thu 10-Jul-08 22:30:54

sorry, didn't realise that only people on bf threads ever know what they're doing


hunkermunker Thu 10-Jul-08 22:33:16

HG, sorry, I was exasperated - you're not the first person to tell us we haven't a clue what we're doing, it's the wrong target, posting on forums is a waste of time, etc.

It's really not a waste of time, I promise.

As for the rest of my post - you agree then, that advertising of formula is an barrier to better breastfeeding support?

TinkerBellesMum Thu 10-Jul-08 22:38:46

Haven't read all this thread but lol at the volunteering comment! Do you realise how many of the women on here are Peer Supporters or BFing Councellors?

I've just completed my NHS course, just waiting for the exam to come round and some of these ladies make me realise how pathetic my course was! I'm going to use it to support mothers until I can train with someone better.

ilovemydog Thu 10-Jul-08 22:45:53

I think part of the problem is those red books that has growth measured by plotting on lines. Grrrr.

There seems to be an over emphasis on what percentile a baby is on.

But I hate smug Kirstie anyway smile

HonoriaGlossop Thu 10-Jul-08 22:59:29

ooh I'm sorry too hunker <apologyfest> I realise my 'you need to be out there volunteering' bit does sound RATHER patronising

I totally agree that advertising of formula is a barrier yes; my exasperation comes about because it is a line trotted out that "oh 99% of people can breastfeed" when in REALITY some can't because of the lack of support - I wish we could be more thoughtful and say instead "if there was the right support out there, up to 99% of people would breastfeed"

oh I realise we're all saying the same thing it's just semantics but this just gets to me. When some percentage CAN'T, in reality, for whatever reason. Being phsyically capable is not the same as being ABLE


I have watched the clip on the link.

What struck me was that as the camera pans round the group of mothers with their babies, there isn't one feeding. Which ime of groups of mums with newborns, is very strange.

Kirtie probably needs the money, her and Phil are being slated for encourageing people to overspend on property and contributing to the very over inflated recent house prices. With a housing slump and no one moving she will be out of a job no?

hunkermunker Thu 10-Jul-08 23:09:27

HG, I agree, there needs to be a lot more understanding of the reasons women make the choices they do wrt feeding their babies. Support, to me, means anything from societal recognition that the mother-baby partnership (dyad - Pruners likes dyad) to telling a new mum to put her feet up and you'll make a cup of tea/look after the big kids/cook her dinner - not just "this is how you latch your baby on".

"You need to be out there volunteering your expertise to provide the help and support at the coalface that will stop women who don't want to use formula but feel they can't manage BF so give up"
do you mind if I go hmm and then grin at that gringrin
goodness we had never thought of that

HonoriaGlossop Thu 10-Jul-08 23:33:03


always glad to be of service, Harpsi

You can't think of everything

elkiedee Fri 11-Jul-08 00:20:06

As one of those far too many women whose plans to bf were defeated very early by a lack of knowledge/confidence/support in the face of a fairly dramatic intervention, I'm offended by this too. I'm really hoping that second time around I won't be having to spend a (not so) small fortune on SMA Gold, or any other formula milk.

Obviously they needed someone they thought would appeal to those of us too middle class to like Jordan!

I can't believe that KA needs the money, but she must have wanted it.

tiktok Fri 11-Jul-08 09:42:11

HG - you said :'Being physically capable is not the same as being ABLE'....do you not think the majority of people (like me) who post on here are aware of this, and acutely sensitive to the fact that the 'choice' to breastfeed is socially mediated, and the 'ability' to breastfeed ditto, as well as linked directly to the level of support and knowledge of the healthcare workers they meet?

I've just read in one of the reports of the Healthcare Commission on maternity care that one of the weakest areas of support and even data collection lies in breastfeeding - one very large hospital trust www.guardian.co.uk/society/2008/jul/10/health.nhs1 returned results which showed 'only 42% of women at the trust said they received good advice, help and support' in feeding.

This is not surprising to any of us working at the coal face of breastfeeding support.

You might get one or two posters here talking about breastfeeding as if it was merely a matter of deploying an innate physiological capacity (like breathing, or walking). But they are a minority, and I think it is, frankly, unfair of you to imply you have a special insight into the reality of it all. You can't be reading mumsnet at all if you think this.

And like hunker, I get tired of hearing that discussing these issues is a waste of time because I should be helping mothers to bf. I do this too, every day, in RL and online. And discussing is awareness raising, and it is important, too.

tiktok Fri 11-Jul-08 09:46:20

Oh, and in relation to the OP, I think SMA's DVD is a blatant attempt to reach mothers directly which is against the law, and Kirstie Allsopp needs a (metaphorical) kicking.

HonoriaGlossop Fri 11-Jul-08 09:48:56

tiktok - I hardly EVER read BF boards because that time is past for me, I posted and have graciously accepted that I leapt in - unless posters are saying IN their posts "I help women to BF every day and I think this...." then I am not a mind reader and do not know that they do this, they could just be posting rather superiorly on a board about how 99% of women CAN bf.....

I have been set right about my assumption already. Unfortunately the tone in which you posted to me is just more of the 'oh I'm so superior and knowledgable that I can hardly bother to type' which is so off-putting on these boards and why I hardly ever read them....And I do KNOW that you will not accept this view in a million, zillion years!!!

Notwithstanding all of the people on here who are BFCs/Peer supporters (show of hands everyone?), those of us who post on the bfing threads on MN are helping out at the coalface. How many threads on here say "I'm being advised to top up - I don't want to - help!".

Posting advice on here is helping just as much as in "RL". This is RL, there are real people on the other ends of these threads getting help from people on here. It's just hard to see them sometimes in between the political threads like this one.

tiktok Fri 11-Jul-08 10:07:06

HG: make up your mind. You don't read the boards because 'that time' (feeding a baby) is over for you. Or you don't read the boards because you think some posters (eg me) post with a superior tone. Which is it?

Whichever it is, despite not reading the boards, you feel able to draw conclusions about what is routinely said here (about 99 per cent of women blah blah blah). You have now accepted that you 'leapt in' - is that an apology? - about the 'not volunteering in RL' thing, but my concern was what you reported as the usual schtick about '99 per cent being able to bf' was false.

I think you have it wrong about me feeling as if I can 'hardly be bothered to post'....if I feel it, it's not having an effect on my posting rate, anyway ;)

Bumperlicious - hard to see people getting help because of 'political threads'....eh? At any one time, the threads asking for and getting help are always in the majority in this folder.

cupsoftea Fri 11-Jul-08 10:11:46

Not watched the video but wouldn't want to take "advice" from a formula company on bf.

I've bf exclusively all my kids - one of which was bigger than KA's ds.

MrsPhas3 Fri 11-Jul-08 10:12:29

Not read everything, but followed link to SMA website and read their advice for bfing. As I bf all 3 of mine never felt the need to look at ff websites, but was surprised at how ok the advice seemed to be. Agree that the diet bit might put some off, but pregnancy websites say the same too - and it doesn't stop people becoming pregnant.

I personally don't care what celebs do or don't endorse, I'm sometimes intrigued as it might (or might not) give an insight into their exciting little lives, but as someone said it's concerning that a mw has signed up with them. I think the whole Carol Vordermann advertising credit is far far worse, and probably has a far more detrimental impact on peoples lives - she is on the tv as someone good with numbers, and so the logical train of thought would be that she is saying these loans are a good deal. At least KA isn't someone who provides parenting advice on tv - would be far more irritating if it was say that woman of 'Honey youre killing the kids' (or whatever its called) 'endorsing' ff.

Piffle Fri 11-Jul-08 10:17:33

has anyone seen the DVD yet?
can we peruse its contents
then go judgey
devils advocate I know.
even for those that end up not breastfeeding the first 48 hrs are spent establishing that fact by using your breasts to at least give it a try. Support and advice at hand or not as sadly is the case in so many places.
I detest that formula brands pick up on expectant mums need for information and advice and use it to subtly peddle their wares.

Put it on the shelf if you must... Put a gurgling happy child on the tin.
but don't worm in via the back door to further inhibit womens chances of breastfeeding and changing expectations about a baby's happiness, health and good sleep being dependent upon their product.
On an aside charlotte church put some humour into where not to breastfeed on her show last night, quite funny, normalizing the word and action.

tiktok Fri 11-Jul-08 10:20:58

Info on breastfeeding from the formula manufacturers is often basically ok (though not always) but with subtle put-offs. They want you to start breastfeeding - they really do. Why? Because women who start bf and who then switch to formula keep their babies on formula for longer (as opposed to moving to cows milk) - and the toddler milks and junior milks we now see are for them.

Women who start off ff do not need to be promoted to, especially.

But the hard market to reach is mothers who have started to breastfeed - they need to be woo'ed and schmoozed. They are outside the contact of the maternity hospital and may not see their HV very often either.They need to have a memory of a product they have seen in pregnancy, or current reminders of it.

They do not want to hear any dissing of breastfeeding, but they do need to have reassurance that formula is fine if they are going to buy it. You will never hear a formula manufacturer say 'use of our product has the following risks' or 'using our product means your baby increases his risk of needing hospital treatment'. However you will hear guff about the importance of diet when you are breastfeeding...a subtle put off.

iBundle Fri 11-Jul-08 10:23:50

does anyone have info re; Kirstie's agent? I would love to send her a little note...

VeniVidiVickiQV Fri 11-Jul-08 10:25:24

oh what folk will do for some pennies in their pockets....

RegenerAitch Fri 11-Jul-08 10:32:06

talking of pennies in pockets, have you lot SEEN how much formula costs these days? aptamil's £7.98 ffs! it was £6.35 two and a half years ago. greedy bastards.

and am v disappointed in Kirstie. thought she had more sense.

Piffle Fri 11-Jul-08 10:36:29

cheaper for babies to drink strongbow and special brew no?
am so glad ive bf saved loads! Have one box of hipp o follow on that I bought when on strong painkillers for nerve pain when ds2 was 11mths but he preferred cows milk! Then back on boob afterwards...
finally self weaned at 15 mths I say that but if he wakes in the night he still has a few drops
whoops sorry self indulgent thread hijack

hf128219 Fri 11-Jul-08 10:45:27

Don't know her agent but here is her last known home address:

iBundle Fri 11-Jul-08 10:56:11

i would like to get in touch with her, but i'm not sure it's appropriate to post her home address on here..would you ask for it to be deleted?

Tiktok, that wasn't meant as a dig. The political threads are the ones that stay in active convos which means that people who don't come direct to the feeding board don't see the hoards of people requesting and getting help on the board. My point (sorry, badly made) was that HG might not see us all giving "RL" help to people and think we just spend our time complaining about formula advertising.

hf128219 Fri 11-Jul-08 10:59:16

Her home address is on the internet anyway - try google, yahoo etc etc etc.

iBundle Fri 11-Jul-08 11:21:46

i think that's a bit different than posting it on here

hf128219 Fri 11-Jul-08 11:30:15

Been deleted. Fair one.

iBundle Fri 11-Jul-08 11:31:08


hf128219 Fri 11-Jul-08 11:33:47

Just got a bit carried away!

Pruners Fri 11-Jul-08 11:38:31

Message withdrawn

hunkermunker Fri 11-Jul-08 11:49:03

Aitch, talking of how much formula costs, have you seen the Heinz/Farley's furore?

Actually, surely you have. It's been all over MN!

(In France, formula is double the price of any here - between 18 and 22 euro for a 900g tub - wonder if that's what they're aiming for here?).

tiktok Fri 11-Jul-08 12:00:41

'Sokay, Bump

Hunker - you may be right about the European thing. We need a European retail/consumer products specialist to tell us if it's likely.

RegenerAitch Fri 11-Jul-08 12:06:14

no, i haven't. i saw it mentioned and didn't know what people were talking about. i have Been Away, stonking around South England in a spotty dress.

hunkermunker Fri 11-Jul-08 12:07:26

I reckon they'll all go up in price now Farley's has left the building.

I was shocked at the price of formula in France - and some of the "science" on the tubs - my French quite rusty, but I think a lot of it was stuff that wouldn't be acceptable over here.

VeniVidiVickiQV Fri 11-Jul-08 12:08:04

Hunker, I've mailed you btw.

hunkermunker Fri 11-Jul-08 12:08:53

Oh, of course! How was it? And the driving?

In a nutshell, Heinz have rebranded Farley's as Heinz Nurture, added some ingredient that's been tested on about five babies and doubled the price (nearly). People are A Bit Cross.

foxythesnowfox Fri 11-Jul-08 12:16:39

... about as much as I think about her alliance with the Tory party hmm

I don't actually care what she thinks about bf/formula or her political leanings, but I do think as a public figure she is promoting by association.

noddyholder Fri 11-Jul-08 12:19:12

She is brainless This is on par with her tory allegiance and her fight to abolish stamp duty for first time buyers when everyone knows that what they need is for prices to fall so that they can afford them not a measley percentage off an overpriced house and a huge mortgage.She talks a lot but says little.

RegenerAitch Fri 11-Jul-08 12:21:22

the stamp duty thing is hilarious, isn't it? or the proposal to give £5000 to first time buyers (and thus increase the price of first-time type properties by exactly £5000).

foxythesnowfox Fri 11-Jul-08 12:59:43

It was the way they promoted it on the show which made me shock. 'We are working with the Conservative Party ... yada yada'. She fell off my estimation scale at that point - good shoes and skirts or not. I want to watch a crummy property show, not a party political broadcast for the milk snatcher party.

Oooh, it goes deep wink

Still, back to the SMA debate ....

VeniVidiVickiQV Fri 11-Jul-08 13:03:25

Aitch - adding 5k to the value of a property wouldnt increase the stamp duty by 5k exactly. Or didnt you mean that?

beansprout Fri 11-Jul-08 13:07:09

Back to the SMA thing - it's all part of the "brand". The notion, the feeling that this company cares about your baby and is just offering impartial advice. It doesn't have to advertise directly, it just has to build up a perception, a feeling that SMA is a nice, baby friendly produce that just wants what is best for your precious child.

And that is why Kirstie should not have done this.

MaloryTowersUrbaniteLady Fri 11-Jul-08 13:09:34

i heart kirstie

VeniVidiVickiQV Fri 11-Jul-08 13:12:51

Well, yes, everyone loves a clown.

MrsPhas3 Fri 11-Jul-08 13:30:11

Sorry tiktok - I have read many of your posts on bfing and generally respect your opinion/experience, etc. But where do you get the information that it is bfers who move on to follow on milk? I am aware that I can only provide a small snapshot of experience, but I never ever felt the need for follow on. Stopped bf dd1 and dd2 at 12 months and they moved to cows milk. Your comments on this are verging on paranoia in my opinion.

hunkermunker Fri 11-Jul-08 13:33:21

MrsP3 - you're aware that Tiktok has vast experience on this subject, you admit yourself that you are but one single voice and yet you call Tiktok verging on paranoid?

Why not just ask her for clarification in the first instance?

tiktok Fri 11-Jul-08 13:38:11

MrsPhas3: If I was sensitive - which I am not - I might take offence at 'verging on paranoia'. As if You talk as if I have made this up in some sort of dream about persecution. I would also like to recommend you read my posts - I was clearly talking about people who start bf and then stop when their babies are quite young and need to stay on a milk-only diet, and who therefore have to switch to formula. I was not talking about you.

My statement that people who start breastfeeding are more likely to keep their babies on formula for longer is not an invention. They come from a marketing presentation I attended a little while ago - I cannot direct you to a written or web-based reference and the inner machinations of formula marketing have to be inferred from what we see of the way they do it.

It's perfectly true though - mothers who start breastfeeding and who then switch to formula stay using formula for longer than mothers who ff from the start. So it makes perfect sense for manufacturers to reach these mothers ie the breastfeeding mothers.

tiktok Fri 11-Jul-08 13:41:18

Following up my own post: do you not see this in your own observations (if you mix with other mothers with a variety of feeding experience and choices)? Who are the ones buying the follow on, the toddler milks, the junior milks...the ones who ff from the start, or the ones who have some experience of bf?

minkychunky Fri 11-Jul-08 13:42:05

If Formula was £38 a pot do you think more people would breastfeed?

That's how much I had to pay for my daughter's formula until my doctor got involved

I am amazed that you are surprised and disappointed at KA whoring herself for quite a few grand.

Pannacotta Fri 11-Jul-08 13:52:22

V disappointing Ms Allsopp, IMO

tiktok Fri 11-Jul-08 13:55:53

Not sure of your point, minky....

I don't think anyone wants formula to be expensive!

minkychunky Fri 11-Jul-08 13:57:37

I think it's a very valid point grin

Do you think more people would try to feed themselves if formula was really pricey?

MrsPhas3 Fri 11-Jul-08 14:02:38

Tiktok - I was not intended to offend you. I apologise. And I freely admit that my experience is limited, and I do recognise your experience, but I am very surprised that bfers (including short term ones) are more likely to fall for the follow-on milk and so on. Not what I have seen, and my eldest is 8, youngest 16 weeks, so I've been in groups of parents for some time. But I'm happy to accept that you've had this information presented to you.

I agree with your sentiments - marketing of something so crucial, that is, the way we feed our children, should not come down to slebs, glossy packaging, etc.

tiktok Fri 11-Jul-08 14:03:06

Minky: no, I don't think they would, not auomatically.

If formula suddenly shot up in price to that extent, people would begin making their own formula, preparing ordinary milk, as they did before formula was widely used.

A few people would stick with bf for a while longer, I suppose.

tiktok Fri 11-Jul-08 14:11:39

MrsPhas, apols accepted

It's not that they 'fall for' follow on milk. They stop breastfeeding and have to switch to formula, not follow on but regular formula, because their babies are not yet old enough for follow on.

It's not 'falling for' the marketing of it all - it's using a product (formula, in general) that has been marketed to them as trustworthy and healthy.

It's also a socio-economic thing. FF-from-the-start families have less disposable income than bf-from-the-start families. (Moreover, Healthy Start vouchers are only usable with infant formula (not follow on) or regular milk.)

tiktok Fri 11-Jul-08 14:19:05

Clarification: vouchers usable for infant formula or regular milk ie not follow on or any other fancy-schmancy milk

minkychunky Fri 11-Jul-08 14:19:57

BTW I am very pro BF grin

RegenerAitch Fri 11-Jul-08 14:24:33

brief property hijack

no vvv, it was another proposal muttered by the govt at one point, that 5k should be given to first timers so as to even the playing field a bit. but of course, it would just put the prices up by 5k. [market forces icon] grin

LuLuMacGloo Fri 11-Jul-08 14:36:39

Seen as there are so many experienced breast feeders here perhaps some of you could help out on this thread.www.mumsnet.com/Talk/2330/565689

foxythesnowfox Fri 11-Jul-08 14:49:46

I breast fed my older 3 until 6 months, then went onto follow-on instead of cows milk as I believed (from reliable sources I believed at the time) that the natural iron levels in babies depleted after this time, and, as formula is fortified, it made sense to me.

If this is what we are led to believe, then its no wonder bfing mums move onto follow-on. I would have done my research and made an informed choice, so its not a switch I would have done on a whim (but it was 6 years ago so can't be specific as to where the information came from). And I suspect I'm not alone in believing this at the time.

Disclaimer: this was in the days before I knew about MN and subsequently am still bf my 1yo DC4grin

tiktok Fri 11-Jul-08 14:57:14

<sobs> This is not what I said, though, foxy. You - breastfeeding to 6 mths - is not the market they are targetting with their DVDs about the early days. It's mums who start off breastfeeding and then stop in the early days, weeks and months and who then have to use regular formula. They are then 'hooked' into formula buying.

The marketing of follow on is a different thing.

foxythesnowfox Fri 11-Jul-08 15:04:02

sorry blush

tiktok Fri 11-Jul-08 15:05:34

Lol at KA being the SMA Jordan for the middle classes

ilovemydog Fri 11-Jul-08 19:21:11

Read an interesting statistic in The New Scientist (the one about trying to mimic breast milk, which is my opinion is fascinating from a scientific stance, but bad in so many other ways - just because something is scientifically possible doesn't mean it's a good idea etc)

Essentially what they are trying to do, from what I understand is to replicate mother's milk - in other words, create a super formula.

Anyway only 3% of women in the UK are breastfeeding exclusively at 6 months. Is this true?

tiktok Fri 11-Jul-08 23:43:59

I think the correct figure is 2 per cent, or it might even be 1 per cent...but it's not entirely trustworthy as a figure as women who started solids at six months (rather than after) go down as not bf excl at that time (though it will still be a low figure).

The stats are from Infant Feeding 2005 (big UK survey).

hunkermunker Sat 12-Jul-08 09:48:59

ILMD, I saw a quote from Aptamil about them not wanting to mimic breastmilk - will try and find it.

Nancy66 Sat 12-Jul-08 12:44:42

What a lovely bunch of women you are - somebody gives the home address of a pregnant woman (thankfully deleted) so you can all send her abuse because you don't agree with her choices and they way she earns money.

tiktok Sat 12-Jul-08 13:41:51

Nancy - who is this 'bunch'? One (count 'em...one) poster, swiftly jumped on by others, instant deletion.

And your point is.....?

We know you are in favour of unethical marketing from your previous posts. Presumably you think the SMA dvd is an excellent idea.

Nancy66 Sat 12-Jul-08 13:50:28

Don't have a problem with it in the least. Just as I don't have a problem with the Cow and Gate advert.

tiktok Sat 12-Jul-08 13:53:13

Perfectly consistent with your previous position in favour of unethical marketing. Congratulations.

Nancy66 Sat 12-Jul-08 13:58:49

that's your take on it Tiktok, I'm just not in favour of a ban on formula advertising or treating FF mothers like lepers.

allgonebellyup Sat 12-Jul-08 14:07:07

oh for Gods sake

They didnt seem to have all these breastfeeding problems 100s of years ago, and in half the devoloping countries (who havent yet been brainwashed by the SMA Force Feeders.)

I am very skinny, had 2 enormous babies, and managed to breastfeed both of them for 2 yrs each. I wouldnt have had it any other way. On days where my milk seemed to slow down, i knew my body would adapt and produce enough milk.
Its only something like 5% of mothers who physically cannot breast feed.

Boobs are for feeding. Why does the whole world make such a freakin fuss?

kiskidee Sat 12-Jul-08 14:21:06

Nancy66 if you go to the very loooong thread about the cow and gate ads, you will see that hflotsofnumbers has been a shitstirrer on that thread. Whether she genuinely believes what she posted on there wrt her beliefs about formula and the advertising of it or if she was just doing it as a trolling exercise is by the by.

It is very intresting that the person who has been 'defending' formula on previous threads was the person on this thread who posted Kirstie Allsop's address.

She is behaving as a previous poster known as cowmad did.

Disclaimer, I have read on here that she has been taking similar shitstirring attitudes on other topics in Talk but frankly, I can't be arsed to go confirm this for myself.

4madboys Sat 12-Jul-08 14:41:22

just a quick question, you dont actually have to swap to follow on milk or the toddler, hungry baby milks etc do you, if your baby is happy on the infant formula, which most would be? there is no need to swop, i mean they go on about the extra iron, which will prob just constipate the baby and also these ones with more cereal to help them sleep? or something, but nutritionally there is no need to swop milks once the baby reaches six months (or in the case of one of the hipp milks ten months)

and with regards to kirstie, i cant believe she need the money and she obviously has no moral standards if she thinks that this is an ok thing to do angry

ilovemydog Sat 12-Jul-08 14:43:14

Could it be that problems with breastfeeding in the past just weren't discussed?

I'm sure women still had problems, but the solutions were different.

Wet nurses, for instance?

tiktok Sat 12-Jul-08 15:14:09

Nancy, do you know what a 'non sequitur' is?

Here's an example:

"I'm just not in favour of a ban on formula advertising or treating FF mothers like lepers."|

Here's another one

"I'm just not in favour of global warming or mugging old ladies for their pension books."


Please explain how an ethical approach to marketing of formula is the same as 'treating ff mothers like lepers'.

Why aren't you in support of ff mothers being able to access non-commercial information about formula, in order to help them make a health-based choice? Why do you prefer to restrict them to a choice between fluffy bunny logos and giggling adverts?

LaVieEnRose Sat 12-Jul-08 19:53:35

[sigh] FF mothers can see past the fluffy bunny logos etc you know, and then make an informed choice. Or are we so stupid that the only thing that influences our choice of formula is the colour of the box and the celeb that promotes it?

If the formula companies want to spend money on advertising let them. Most parents tend to look at ingredients etc to make an informed choice.

Or did I instantly lose half my brain power when I stopped bf at 3 months?

littlepinkpixie Sat 12-Jul-08 19:59:10

But for most formulas the only real way of distiguishing between them is the colour of the box, the celeb who promotes it, or just anecdotes from mums, midwives, HV.
Research into any meaningful differences in effect between the different formula milks is pitifully bad. In the absence of evidence who is actually in a position to make an informed choice?

LaVieEnRose Sat 12-Jul-08 20:03:09

well we tried sma but ds didn't like it so were recommended aptimil by hv (shock!) and he's doing really well on it. A lot better for his tummy. Its also trial and error but I personally wouldn't be swayed by packaging or celeb endorsement when it comes to my baby's food.

lulumama Sat 12-Jul-08 20:05:26

dunno, if the way it was packaged and who it was endorsed by did not make a difference, do you think that formula companies would bother
, nope , it would be in a plain tin with no sleb endorsement.

jordan / sma/ hello magazine spread anyone? that was very bad IMHO. >>or was it ok! magazne..?>>

i did not make an informed choice to formula feed, by god, i do regret it now, more power to anyone who did though!

LaVieEnRose Sat 12-Jul-08 20:19:08

true lulumama. I just get a bit annoyed when it is assumed that parents who choose to ff will therefore fall for advertising and give their baby the formula in the pretty box even if it doesn't agree with the baby's digestive system.

Just a bit sick of some posters who exclusively bf, have never used formula or intend to but feel they have the right to comment on something that they have no experience of. I, on the other hand, have bf and used formula and so can see both sides. Although as I only bf for 3 months I'm no expert and so would not post on a bf thread. Usually wink

lulumama Sat 12-Jul-08 20:20:41

well, i have never breastfed, DD did try to latch on , but ...... and does not stop me wading in ! luckily, tiktok puts me straight if i get it wrong grin

hf128219 Sat 12-Jul-08 21:18:03

Right I can 'shitstir' if I want. But I wasn't. I was just getting fed up with people getting their knickers in such a twist - and not being able to express themselves.

I have never changed my name on mumsnet ever. So no trolling thank you.

kiskidee Sat 12-Jul-08 21:57:40

sure you can shitstir all you want. the beauty of mn is that it keeps deletions to a minimum.

as for trolling, it is not just about namechanging to be a nuisance. It is also about being deliberately rude, insulting and provocative to get a 'bite'.

the definition of trolling as it was originally meant on early listservs was the fishing definition, not the little guy under a bridge one.

hf128219 Sat 12-Jul-08 21:59:48

Yeah, yeah WHATEVER.

Still looking for the kill grin

ilovemydog Sat 12-Jul-08 22:00:13

'express themselves?' smile

did you mean to use these words in a debate about breatfeeding?

RegenerAitch Sat 12-Jul-08 22:29:41

lavie... i used aptamil with my dd on the advice of HPs (there being nothing else to go on apart from the friendly polar bear on the pack). they are heavily marketed to, that's why they recommend particular products.

anyway, glad that your boy is doing well on it, but i wanted to know what you saw when you saw past the fluffy bunnies. cos there isn't anything else, is there?

(and i won't use aptamil if i have another, no way. i personally think it gave dd the shits for a year. fine to begin with, i was pleased that she had poo like bm etc, but i didn't change to follow-on cos i wanted the fish oils and she still had it at a year. all her bf pals were pooing fairly normally by then. i read up a bit about it, those fish oils give babies the shits, basically. hmm)

hf128219 Sat 12-Jul-08 22:32:50

No! Express as in explain.

The whole thing just gets me going - some people come on for a fight or an argument.

And think they are so right. I just love the capital letters - wow! I am so shaken - I just can't sleep.

As I have already said KA's address is already internet available.

So Kiskidee where are you?

hf128219 Sat 12-Jul-08 23:04:14

Yeah Kiskidee where are you?

sabire Sat 12-Jul-08 23:12:41

"FF mothers can see past the fluffy bunny logos etc you know, and then make an informed choice"

It'd be good to think that mums could do this , but in order to make a properly informed choice they need access to the research on which the formula companies base their claims as to the efficacy and safety of their product, and the education to assess the quality of this research. They also need access to evidence based, independent comparisons of the different formulas - showing which ones are best tolerated by the largest number of babies. Unfortunately this information doesn't exist, so mums are left to rely on anecdotal evidence and marketing claims.....

TBH, most people I know who buy formula seem to accept the claims about the product made by manufacturers on the sound basis that 'they wouldn't be allowed to say it if it wasn't true'. They also accept what health visitors tell them about the different brands (such as 'aptamil is the closest to breastmilk) without ever questioning them as to the evidence on which they base their assertions.

I personally am utterly staggered by how little proper research even quite educated parents do before deciding a) how to feed their babies or b) what formula to use. I am convinced that 90% of people spend more time researching which buggy they're going to buy their baby than what they're going to put in their child's body as their sole food for the first 6months of their life.

LaVieEnRose - you say you did do some research into this issue? What were your sources of information? How did you choose which brand of formula to use for your baby?

kiskidee Sat 12-Jul-08 23:18:42

in the northeast of england. why do you care? loving my attention or something?

hf128219 Sat 12-Jul-08 23:34:07

Where in the North East? We could meet up for coffee.

tiktok Sat 12-Jul-08 23:47:00

LaVie - are you deliberately misunderstanding me? Or is it accidental?

I am not saying mothers 'fall for' celeb endorsement when choosing formula. I am saying the manufacturers insult them by making them choose between different celebrities and different fluffy logos - that's all there is to go on, by way of 'informed choice'.

When it comes to 'looking beyond' the logos, and attempting to see through them to the 'real' information that allows you to compare and choose on health grounds, you have Big Black Hole of Nothing At All.

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 12:40:30

What's the difference with a celebrity like Nell McAndrew promoting BF and one like Kirstie Allsop promoting FF?

I would imagine they were both paid for their endorsement.

The only difference is that one chooses to feed in a way that some women find unacceptable.

girliefriend Sun 13-Jul-08 12:51:31

tut tut Kirstie - I am shaking my head!

Pruners Sun 13-Jul-08 12:54:49

Message withdrawn

LIZS Sun 13-Jul-08 12:56:14

Sorry Kirstie hmm

ilovemydog Sun 13-Jul-08 13:00:19

pruners: NHS possibly or breastfeeding charities?

Pruners Sun 13-Jul-08 13:04:58

Message withdrawn

ilovemydog Sun 13-Jul-08 13:11:01

good point pruners !

kiskidee Sun 13-Jul-08 13:13:39

is this the sort of breastfeeding promotion you are referring to Nancy66?

I highly doubt that Nell McAndrew got anything to do this promotion. It is more likely that she did it because she is an enthuiastic breastfeeder and has a good personal and possibly professional relationship with at least one of the organisers. But I know nothing really so will be happy to be better informed by anyone who may know more.

You may find that for every 320 which formula manufacturers spend to market their wares, the NHS spends less than a 3 on promoting breastfeeding. I can't remember the figures so I have rounded them off to the nearest 3.

kiskidee Sun 13-Jul-08 13:14:44

You may find that for every £20 which formula manufacturers spend to market their wares, the NHS spends less than a £ on promoting breastfeeding. I can't remember the figures so I have rounded them off to the nearest £.

WilfSell Sun 13-Jul-08 13:34:45

"The only difference is that one chooses to feed in a way that some women find unacceptable. "

Yes, Nancy66, the breastfeeder...

Unfortunately, women who BF get a much shiter time of things than women who FF.

And on these threads, somehow those of us engaging politically with the Formula promotion issue, also get it in the neck for apparently criticising FFers. Which is just not what we're doing, however much it feels like that to some women.

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 13:46:11

Censoring a product that you don't approve of is never the answer. The answer is to ignore it because it doesn't effect you.

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 13:52:08

No one 'disapproves' of formula or of formula feeders, Nancy...a point which you are singularly bone-headed about, for some reason.

However, the way it is marketed is worthy of disapproval.

BTW, I happen to know that Nell McAndrew is not paid for her association with breastfeeding. It's done out of goodwill.

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 13:56:31

Nancy, I asked you yesterday:

"Please explain how an ethical approach to marketing of formula is the same as 'treating ff mothers like lepers'."

Still waiting for an answer.

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 13:57:58

I'm not bone headed Tiktok - i just have an opposing view to you, something you don't seem to like.

And I doubt very much that Nell McAndrew was not paid.

maidamess Sun 13-Jul-08 13:58:40

Ohhh I geddit. She's advertising formula. The way you lot were so up in arms I thought it was heroin.

I mixed fed all my children. My choice. I feel those who choose to formula feed for whatever reason would never dare raise their head above the parapet on MN, as it seems to be the WORST thing you could ever do for your child.

Now I expect a load of you to jump on me and say IT IS THE WORST THING!! But in my view its not. And yes its all about big business, just the same way nappies, buggies etc all the other paraphenalia that comes with a baby is.

I'm suprised at the strength of feeling, 'tis all....

iBundle Sun 13-Jul-08 14:02:47

i wouldn't be surprisd if Nell Mcandrew got travelling expenses only for her endorsement of the bf group

iBundle Sun 13-Jul-08 14:03:46

nappies buggies etc not the same

and those who would benefit the most from bf becoming the "norm" are those who need it most - in terms of health and finance

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 14:04:20

Nancy - she was not paid. I have direct knowledge of that promotion. Who would pay her??

Please answer my question.

Maidamess - no one suggests that ff is the worst thing to do for one's children! It's about ethical marketing. As you say, it's all about big business, but the unique feature of formula and big business is that unethical marketing has a public health impact as well as an impact on individual mothers and babies.

You don't really think people are going to jump on you here and criticise you, do you?Many people who feel strongly about this issue have used formula themselves!

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 14:05:06

iBundle, AFAIK, she did not ask for, or get, expenses.

WilfSell Sun 13-Jul-08 14:05:36

You're surprised at the strength of feeling? Perhaps you would understand why people feel so strongly about the marketing of formula by reading this thread through, and the ones about the Cow and Gate ad.

If I start explaing all over again, doubtless I'll be criticised for making FFers feel bad (I'm speaking as someone who has mix-fed BTW, but not with every child).

But the reasons people feel strongly have NOTHING TO DO with any criticism of women who formula feed. We have to say this again and again and again because it just doesn't seem to compute.

Nor is it adequate for others to keep saying 'FFS just ignore them'. We don't ignore them because debating these issues is part of the challenge to get people to think about what manufacturers are up to.

Why won't manufacturers put proper making-up instructions on the packets? Why won't they publish the full details of the 'research' they do to make their claims? Why do they create adverts that are direct challenges to the much better research on BF? (By much better I mean 'more scientifically credible and in the public arena'...)

LIZS Sun 13-Jul-08 14:07:39

"And yes its all about big business, just the same way nappies, buggies etc all the other paraphenalia that comes with a baby is."

Isn't that just the point. Not so much bf vs ff as the way companies exploit a basic need for profit. After all the list you mention are nice to haves whereas milk for a baby isn't. Celebs lending their names are simply being used, ok they undoubtedly get paid pretty well but it is primarily to capture the imagination and trust of new mums so they choose that formula/brand over another or bfeeding. Had creditted KA with more intelligence than to enter the fray so to speak, especially since she hasn't had the second baby yet so may find things very different this time.

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 14:09:18

Nancy, you are bone-headed You refuse to think of this debate in terms of anything but a criticism of formula feeders. It's about marketing. Marketing. Marketing. And did I mention 'marketing'?

maidamess Sun 13-Jul-08 14:09:33

Maybe I'm struggling to believe that anyone would formula feed based purely on a celebrity endorsing it.

iBundle Sun 13-Jul-08 14:10:04

that doesn't surprise me either tiktok, I meant the only £ that might have changed hands woudl have been trav exps, there's hardly money washing around for the promotion of bf...

still feel v sad and angry about KA taking the ff shilling. and those feelings are in no way directed towards the women who choose to buy and use formula.

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 14:13:05

maidamess, please read the thread and the other threads on this topic. No one thinks mothers make the decision not to breastfeed as a result of what a celeb says. It's the marketing approach in general, of which this is a part, that creates a relationship between mothers and the product on sale...and which markedly omits any decent information about the product.

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 14:14:28

Nell McAndrew did a photo shoot with OK magazine to promote breastfeeding - you reckon she wasn't paid for that as well? Get real.

I have no problem with this at all. She breastfed and chose to tell people about it and earn a fee out of it too.

Kirstie Allsopp chose to FF and to talk about it and earn a fee. Makes them even stevens in my book.

LIZS Sun 13-Jul-08 14:15:05

but they will and KA is probably quite different form many previous "endorsers" in terms of "class", age, occupation, being happy in her size and style, so would appeal to a different sector of the market, a growing sector according to recent stats, of older(35+) mums balancing career and motherhood. It makes ff and this brand in particular seem more acceptable to them.

littlepinkpixie Sun 13-Jul-08 14:15:25

Wouldnt it have been OK magazine who paid her for that then?

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 14:16:26

<drums fingers>

I am going out now, but hope you will answer my questions, Nancy.

The OK shoot: she will have been paid by OK for her appearence. No one will have paid her to promote bf - who would have done so? Who gains financially if bf is promoted?

TheFallenMadonna Sun 13-Jul-08 14:17:55

Ah interested parties. I was going to post a new thread, but you're probably all here...

Interesting article in this week's New Scientist on active components of breastmilk and making enhanced formula which is more like it. And the pros and cons thereof.

Don't think New Scientist make their contents accessible online. Will have a look. Worth a read tough I think.

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 14:19:34

the Department of Health.

Tiktok there's not a lot of point answering your questions because, sadly, you're too tunnel visioned and (worringly, given that you are a BF counsellor) unbelievably patronising.

iBundle Sun 13-Jul-08 14:20:17

from the snippet of the video I saw of Kirstie, she was talking about baby health/what to do in the first few days - ie general health/info (presumably good stuff) is being linked with formula - a subliminal way of saying if x is good, then y (formula) is great (or even the best) way too

iBundle Sun 13-Jul-08 14:21:25

so does the DoH make a profit out of increasing bf? no

oh, unless you count the "savings" from reduced hospital admissions for infants once they have fewer gastro/resp infections..hmm

ilovemydog Sun 13-Jul-08 14:24:57

Tik, as far as who gains from babies being breastfed? I don't know how much the NHS spends on advertising to get people to stop smoking?

Or getting people to donate blood?

iBundle Sun 13-Jul-08 14:26:15

DoH does spend a lot of money on promoting smoking cessation - and a lot less on promoting bf I'd imagine

but they don't "profit" from it


Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 14:28:03

Who said they did profit from it?

ruty Sun 13-Jul-08 14:31:27

gone off KA in a big way.

iBundle Sun 13-Jul-08 14:31:57

"Nell McAndrew did a photo shoot with OK magazine to promote breastfeeding - you reckon she wasn't paid for that as well? Get real. "

so - who do you think would pay for promoting bf???

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 14:33:05

sorry ibundle, no idea what you're saying.

iBundle Sun 13-Jul-08 14:36:57

you've said that she would have been paid for promoting breast feeding

who would pay her for promoting breast feeding?

(not a trick question)

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 14:38:18

I believe she was paid by the Department of Health and Ok magazine.

iBundle Sun 13-Jul-08 14:40:53

you really believe that?

ruty Sun 13-Jul-08 14:43:33

LOL at the idea of DoH paying NM to promote breastfeeding in OK magazine..

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 14:43:46

The pro breastfeeding feature in OK magazine - yes, she would have been paid.

The two campaigns she's done in association with the Department of Health? i don't know but I wouldn't be surprised.

littlepinkpixie Sun 13-Jul-08 14:44:48

She probably was paid by OK magazine. I suspect that would have had more to do with her being famous than a desire on the part of OK magazine to support breastfeeding.

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 14:45:53

Of course it's because she's famous.
Same reason SMA used Kirstie Allsopp

littlepinkpixie Sun 13-Jul-08 14:48:34

What I mean is that OK were paying Nell in order to promote OK
just like SMA paid Kirstie to promote SMA.
I dont think that OK paid Nell to promote BF

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 14:51:44

yes, but it all adds up to the same result.

Two celebrities feeding their children in different ways - both have financially gained.

Just thought it was worth making the point.

TheFallenMadonna Sun 13-Jul-08 14:53:39

Do you not think they would have paid her if she'd been formula feeding?

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 14:56:09

Yes, they probably would.

TheFallenMadonna Sun 13-Jul-08 14:58:32

So she isn't being paid to promote breastfeeding...

Well surely it doesn't matter anyway, because advertising / celeb endorsement doesn't work? hmm

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 15:05:12

In that instance she was, yes.

etc etc

ruty Sun 13-Jul-08 15:12:43

i had no idea OK had such ethical concerns. They've come a long way since shoving a chocolate bar in Anthea Turner's newlywed gob.

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 18:22:36

I have done a little search on Nell McAndrew and breastfeeding, and she was involved in Bf awareness week on behalf of the NHS. I don't know if she will have been paid for her time doing that - she may well have been, and I would have no objection to that. I didn't see the pieces in OK about her and breastfeeding. If they were primarily to promote breastfeeding, then goodness knows what the deal was...if it was 'advertorial' then the NHS would have paid OK.

It seems to me perfectly ethical for breastfeeding to be promoted in this way. Increasing the number of mothers who breastfeed and increasing the length of time they breastfeed reduces the amount of public money spent on treating illness in infants in the community and in hospital, reduces the instance of breast cancer, and it all adds up to a significant saving to the public purse.

Nancy, I don't understand why there is 'no point' in you answering my questions because I am patronising...I'm not, but even if I was, why would that stop you answering me? All I want to know is

* why you persist in equating a stance against unethical marketing with making ff mothers into lepers

* why you do not support ff mothers having full access to non-commercial information about formula

Why are those questions patronising? Oops, that's a third question....never mind!

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 18:47:36

I don't agree with the premise that formula advertising is unethical. It's no more unethical than the advertising of any product.

Campaigning groups have successfully banned the advertising of formula to newborns - despite it being a choice for millions of women. Now they want to ban the advertising of formula for older children - despite it being a feeding choice of millions more women.

You don't think this would make a mother who has chose to FF feel bad? You don't think it's patronising?

I just wish people would stop treating FF mothers as

1) criminals

2) stupid

littlepinkpixie Sun 13-Jul-08 19:09:20

The way that formula is advertised is often unethical. Even in the UK formula companies frequently try to stretch the boundaries in adverts, by using young looking babies (ie looking younger than 6 months), by advertising the brand name and not the specific product etc

sabire Sun 13-Jul-08 19:38:36

"It's no more unethical than the advertising of any product"

Except that formula isn't like any other product is it? Because your choice of how you feed your baby has implications in the short and long term for their health and development.

Which is why mothers need accurate information about formula, rather than advertising, which is about manipulation and persuasion.

But I can see where you're coming from. You clearly think that ff and bf are roughly the same as far as babies are concerned, and it makes no difference to babies how they are fed.

If this were the case then you'd be justified in taking the stance you do. Unfortunately it's NOT the case, which puts you firmly in the wrong on this issue.

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 19:42:37

The (black and white) word according to Sabire...!

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 20:06:38

Nancy, I am still waiting for an answer to my questions.

Here they are again:

* why do you persist in equating a stance against unethical marketing with making ff mothers into lepers (I note you are now saying marketing it in an ethical way would make ff mothers feel 'stupid' and 'criminal')

* why do you do not support ff mothers having full access to non-commercial information about formula

Saying 'I don't think it's unethical' is not an answer to either of these questions.

Many ff mothers - and they have expressed the view here - want formula to be marketed ethically.

There are many products that are not advertised for one reason or another, and no one feel criminal, stupid, or like a leper for using the products. We would soon get used to not seeing the ads! Would you feel criminal for using formula if you ceased to see ads for it? Really?

I have used the example of safety pins before. Not advertised. No one misses them not being advertised. We don't even think about it! We could add other things to the list - prescription meds are not advertised but no one feels criminalised, stupid or like a leper for using them, just because they are marketed in a controlled way.

Do please try to answer my questions. You feel so strongly about this issue, you must be able to...surely.

sabire Sun 13-Jul-08 20:09:04

No Nancy66 - the word according to the NHS, the Royal College of Paediatrics, The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, The Royal College of Midwives, the American Academy of Paediatrics, the World Health Organisation and Unicef (among others).

Babies who are artificially fed are deprived on the protective benefits of breastfeeding and are therefore more vulnerable to disease and infection than they would have been had they been breastfed.

I know you don't like to hear things like this but it's a statement of fact.

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 20:14:44

Tiktok, I consider that I have answered your questions (several times!) if you choose not to see it then not much I can do about that.

I'm sure you'll interpret that as some sort of triumph - it really isn't. Just exasperation at having said one thing and then having it twisted and thrown back at you to mean something entirely different.

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 20:16:35

Oh Sabire do get off your high horse - nowhere have I said that i think FF is superior or even equal to BF.

You really are a tiresome, preachy pain in the arse.

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 20:17:25

Another question then - where I have twisted something you have said and thrown it back at you?

And FGS, answer my questions!!

Including the new one - 'would you feel like a criminal if ff ceased to be marketed in an unethical way?'

Pruners Sun 13-Jul-08 20:22:23

Message withdrawn

Pruners Sun 13-Jul-08 20:23:57

Message withdrawn

sabire Sun 13-Jul-08 20:42:01

Nancy - you said formula should be treated like any other product. You must assume that how you feed a baby has no health implications, otherwise surely, you'd be against pregnant women being exposed to manipulative, persuasive advertising to buy formula.

And some people need to be reminded that choosing how they feed their baby isn't a decision on par with choosing which wallpaper they buy for the nursery.

You, namely.

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 20:47:28

Pruners, would you feel like a leper, a criminal or stupid (or all three) if SMA were not permitted to issue a DVD advertising their formula?

Or do you think Nancy has got this one wrong?

SilentTerror Sun 13-Jul-08 20:48:32

I couldn't care less.
If she was pushing crack cocaine I might be interested.
Each to their own.

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 20:52:17

<stands shoulder-to-shoulder with fellow ffer Pruni>

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 20:54:56

SilentTerror - so you wouldn't feel like a criminal, a leper or stupid if this DVD was not allowed?

I don't want anyone to feel like this, and I hope we can reassure Nancy that she doesn't have to worry about it...if discover that actually, women would not feel anything of the sort, then she can feel reassured that it would be a good thing if formula was not promoted in this way.

At the moment, she thinks it's important that we have this sort of promotion, in order to protect pregnant and new mothers from these feelings.

All sounds a bit patronising to me...

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 20:55:38

Sabire - no I didn't say that at all. This thread (and you) are really boring me but I don't want to be misrepresented. I said that I did not consider the advertising of formula to be any more unethical than the advertising of most other things.
If you've interpreted that as me saying that new mothers should feed their kids Cherry Tango, well good for you.

TikTok I did not say that Kirstie Allsopp not doing her wretched DVD would make FF mothers feel like criminals. My point was that the continued and aggressive campaign to completely ban all advertising of formula treats women who do want to FF as stupid or criminal.

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 20:58:50

"My point was that the continued and aggressive campaign to completely ban all advertising of formula treats women who do want to FF as stupid or criminal."

can you explain that more clearly, nancy? in what way are women being treated as stupid or criminals? i genuinely don't understand. i ff, and am clever enough to know now that i was sold at in wickedly smart ways when i was absolutely at my most physically and emotionally vulnerable. this resulted in me spending a quid per box more than i ever needed to, on a product that gave my dd the shits for a year. i'd like to have been protected from that, just by having some clear information.

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 21:01:57

Nancy, you said, "Now they want to ban the advertising of formula for older children - despite it being a feeding choice of millions more women.

You don't think this would make a mother who has chose to FF feel bad? You don't think it's patronising?

I just wish people would stop treating FF mothers as

1) criminals

2) stupid"

You think the continued advertising of formula prevents mothers who ff from feeling bad. You think the call for ethical marketing makes women feel as if they are criminal or stupid - or makes them feel as if they are treated like this.

Now you are saying that's not what you think.

I am confused.

SilentTerror Sun 13-Jul-08 21:02:29

Tiktok,I have both formula fed and breast fed my four DCs.I do not notice any difference in the mental ability,physical or emotional well being between the ones FF and the ones BF.
I think breastfeeding is great if it is successful and if the mother is happy and contented doing it. That is wonderful,and in an ideal world would be like that for everyone.
However,I do not think breastfeeding is the be all and end all of motherhood.There are many many other aspects that are important,and as a paediatric nurse I have seen too many women consumed by guilt because breast feeding did not go smoothly.
I honestly think that a happy mother equala a happy child,and if that means formula then so be it.

WilfSell Sun 13-Jul-08 21:04:39


WilfSell Sun 13-Jul-08 21:05:47

This is not a debate about the benefits of BF compared to FF; nor is it about the decision to use formula (not directly anyhow)

It is about whether the marketing of formula is ethical.

Why do you (nancy, ST) think that formula advertising aimed at babies under 6 months old is banned?

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 21:05:48

there you go again tiktok - is that how you run your classes? They must be a laugh a minute.

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 21:09:41

ST, like many health professionals you fail to recognise that the pain of not bfing often comes from a place entirely internal to the mother. it's not an exterior thing, brought about by reading pro-bfing material, if anything it's completely instinctive.

and this happy mother, happy baby thing. i wasn't happy ffing. does that mean my child was unhappy? or if i'd been suffering from PND? unhappy child again? nice.

SilentTerror Sun 13-Jul-08 21:10:07

Wilfsell,I understand completely why it is banned.Because breast is best,I don't disagree.
What I do disagree with is that by FF mothers are somehow committing some crime against motherhood,and the attituse sometimes expressed on MN that FF is akin to child abuse.
Sorry,not answering the OP's question,I knowsmile

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 21:12:02

it's not because breast is best, it's because formula is worse. by a long, long, long chalk. but no-one's allowed to say that, obviously, in case ffing mums feel bad. or stupid. or criminalised. (or if they don't actually read what people are saying and instead get all hot under the collar about some imagined slight. hmm)

WilfSell Sun 13-Jul-08 21:13:50

Where, where, where does it ever say on MN that using FF is akin to crimes against motherhood or child abuse? Where on this thread (or the Cow and Gate one) does it say that?

Sorry but that is just paranoia.

SilentTerror Sun 13-Jul-08 21:15:53

I completely understand the 'pain of not breast feeding' I felt very very guilty when Ds,my second baby,seemed to find latching on impossible and became dehydrated.That is why I try my best to help mothers on the ward in similar circumstances continue breast feeding.
I just dislike the flip side of the breast feeding coin,that formula is the devil's milk.

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 21:18:52

and how on EARTH were you comforted under those ghastly circumstances by something as absurdly pat as 'happy mother, happy baby'? why on earth would you repeat it?

and examples, please, of this devil's milk stuff. it's a serious allegation you're making, i'd love to have a word with the people who are saying it, or anything like it. because formula saved my dd, i feel, it's just that i got conned in the process.

ff is not child abuse
Formula marketing leads to an adverse effect on children in the population as a whole

- Marketing works (I'm sorry, but there really isn't any argument)
- Formula, for all it is the best substitute (the only acceptable substitute) for breast milk, has risks.
- Formula is marketed

What is not to understand?

SilentTerror Sun 13-Jul-08 21:24:20

I was comforted because he was fed from a bottle and got better. I battled my own guilty feelings about formula feeding him because he was better,and happier,and therefore so was I .
My happy mother comment was meant to illustrate my own feelings,no one elses,and I apologise if I have upset anyone.Perhaps I have read too much in to comments about formula feeding. Profuse apologies again.
For what it is worth, I breast fed my third and fourth babies.

Dottoressa Sun 13-Jul-08 21:27:27

Kirstie - I will still be your friend if ever we meet (even more so if you can find me a house in Harrogate with a huge garden for under several million pounds).

Why can't everyone just be happy with their own choice to bf/ff (yes, it is still a choice), and not worry about dvds and adverts if they're really happy with that choice? If you're happy with your chosen method, and your baby is thriving and contented, why does it matter that SMA (or whoever) advertise on TV? Should all adverts be banned in case they influence our decisions? (Of course, some may say yes to this...)

WilfSell Sun 13-Jul-08 21:27:51

Nancy, I don't think anyone can see where you've answered Tiktok's questions, and sinking to personal attack of her hard work as a BFC is really really abysmal. It smacks of someone cornered because they don't know where to go with their own argument.

WilfSell Sun 13-Jul-08 21:28:40

Dottoressa, please read the thread before posting such stuff. It has been said, and countered, about a million times already.

Dottoressa Sun 13-Jul-08 21:30:42

I don't have time to read the full thread! (How does anyone with children have the time to read full threads, btw?)
(Wilfsell, are you a man?)

WilfSell Sun 13-Jul-08 21:33:14

Yep. I'm a bloke. Obv.

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 21:38:01

ah, then ST, what you describe is 'happy baby, happy mother'. a sentiment which i have a good deal of belief in, as it happens, and it's why i don't really feel guilty about not bfing dd exclusively. i could see she was better off with the formula. sure, i was sad that i didn't manage it, but damned if i'm going to feel guilty.

however, the other way round 'happy mum, happy baby' it is insultingly pat, and i always found it to be. from an HCP, it's really just another way of saying 'i was hoping you'd be off my books by now.' grin

Dottoressa Sun 13-Jul-08 21:40:25

Sorry, Wilf - just had to check. It was your great interest in breastfeeding that made me wonder if you were really a woman pretending to be a man.

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 21:40:34

and dottoressa (are you really a doctor btw?) it is Not A Choice for so many, many women. <sighs>

ruty Sun 13-Jul-08 21:41:23


ruty Sun 13-Jul-08 21:42:36

sorry that was for Dotoressa, but my brain is too addled to keep up so i may have misunderstood...

WilfSell Sun 13-Jul-08 21:42:39

What are you talking about Dottoressa? Do you imaging Tiktok is really a clock?

Dottoressa Sun 13-Jul-08 21:42:56

Yes indeedy, ExterminAitch! What's more, I'm the real McCoy (i.e. not a medical one).

Personally, I lied about bf to stop the hv badgering me. I told her that bf was all going marvellously well, then cracked the Cow and Gate open shortly after her departure... grin

WilfSell Sun 13-Jul-08 21:43:21


iBundle Sun 13-Jul-08 21:43:45

oh v clever dottoressa

what do you do for an encore?

Dottoressa Sun 13-Jul-08 21:44:03

Do you mean she isn't a clock? Wilf, you are shattering all my illusions.

ruty Sun 13-Jul-08 21:44:18

now this is a definite hmm

SilentTerror Sun 13-Jul-08 21:44:27

Thank God we can agree then,ExterminAitch!grin
Am sticking to less contentious threads in Style from now on!

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 21:44:53

that sounds like a choice to me, you lucky thing. seriously. but there are thousands of us who wanted to bf and couldn't/didn't get the support etc and who had no such choice.

what influenced you to buy C&G, btw?

Dottoressa Sun 13-Jul-08 21:46:42


Sorry - this is all a bit silly. I just don't see why Kirstie shouldn't be allowed to advertise whatever she likes without other people getting pious about it, whether it be SMA or the Conservative party.

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 21:47:36

ST, no, i'm sure as a paed nursse you'll have a lot to contribute on here. it's such a shame when women get themselves into twists about bfing (speaking as one who did) but it's mostly resolvable If Only They Had Good Post-natal Care... wink

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 21:48:46

and by the same token, Dottore, if she puts her name to something poxy we have every right to think less of her for it.

Dottoressa, it's all explained on this thread

Dottoressa Sun 13-Jul-08 21:50:27

C&G - um, the fact that they stocked it in my local Safeway, so we could walk to get supplies.

But it is also true that I was screaming in agony after trying (and failing) to bf my first child and being told that he wasn't properly latched on (yes, I knew he wasn't!!!) After two weeks of that, I did then make the choice not to continue, and chose not to do it at all with DD (though did express milk for bottles for the first couple of weeks). So I'm not quite as glib as it may appear...

WilfSell Sun 13-Jul-08 21:50:43

I already told her that SPB, but she ain't listening...

ilovemydog Sun 13-Jul-08 21:52:17

the Conservative Party? shock

Now I am really offended.

Dottoressa Sun 13-Jul-08 21:52:34

Exterm - it does depend on your definition of poxy. But yes, if you consider formula to be poxy, you do of course have every right to think less of her...

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 21:53:37

isn't that an extraordinary way to make a decision about the only thing you're going to feed your child for the first precious months of their lives? grin (despite being by far the most sensible reasoning, of course).

i take it you put more thinking into your car seat? maybe read a which report? would that there could be such a thing for formula... [dreamy]

sorry that you had such shite support, Dottore, it's a shame.

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 21:54:58

yep, i think that i'd have to be pretty skint to endorse formula, and she isn't. it is a lifesaver, but it's poxy compared to what should be on tap, with proper support. it just is.

Dottoressa Sun 13-Jul-08 21:59:52

Thank you, SPB. Wilf - the problem is that you just didn't make the same point quite so politely.

I fear I don't do sensible thinking (I chose DS's school because the green uniform suited his colouring). Ah well!

(And what's wrong with the Conservative party? Anything that gave us Mr Dreamy, Michael Portillo, should be celebrated...)

MatNanPlus Sun 13-Jul-08 22:06:43

They must be feeling the pinch of more crediable mothers like Charlotte Church!!!

ilovemydog Sun 13-Jul-08 22:10:19

The issue isn't whether individuals choose formula or not. It's about how it's marketed and what independent information is available so that parents can make an informed decision.

In the formula v breastfed debate, there is no question as far as content. Breastmilk wins hands down. Why people may need to use formula is a personal decision, and in my opinion a private one.

(no idea who Mr Dreamy is.)

MatNanPlus Sun 13-Jul-08 22:13:23

oops, that will teach me not to notice that a thread is 3 not 1 page long. blush

WilfSell Sun 13-Jul-08 22:14:16

well mine's got 11 pages...? grin

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 22:40:11

(Wilf - I thought you were a woman, too )

Nancy - you don't need to worry about what I say in classes. We don't really talk about the way formula is marketed. As a result, there is no problem with people telling me and the rest of the class that it is fine to advertise it because any suggestion that this form of marketing should stop makes women feel like 'criminals' or 'lepers'.

ST - I despair when a paediatric nurse, who says she helps women breastfeed (and I believe your sincerity here), says the flipside of 'the breastfeeding coin' is that formula is the devil's milk.

Who is saying this?

In my experience, the only people who make this and similar points are people who are denigrating breastfeeding support - I have never heard anyone involved in breastfeeding support make this sort of nasty, hurtful comment.

We should not be afraid of outlining the health impact on infants of using formula, for fear people will accuse us of using horrible descriptions, which can only be hurtful i) to the many people trying to help women get the bf experience they planned and ii) to women who use formula.

hunkermunker Sun 13-Jul-08 22:41:38

Cor, did this kick off then?

Whoda thunk?

Amazing there are still people on MN who don't know that wanting formula advertising banned isn't the same as thinking formula's evil or that women who feed their babies formula are criminals (fgs - that's a new one, even on me).

The clue is in the emphasis on the word advertising, you see?

nelliesmum Sun 13-Jul-08 22:42:48

God bless SMA...

WilfSell Sun 13-Jul-08 22:43:22

I AM a woman... I really really am. I was being, I dunno, sarcastic cos I wasn't really sure what point Dottoressa was making about whether I was a man.

hunkermunker Sun 13-Jul-08 22:43:31

I wonder if Kirstie has or is planning a parenting column in a publication somewhere? Surely with the property market tailing off, she's got to find herself another niche?


Be very handy for SMA to have already associated her with their product then, wouldn't it?

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 22:43:57

ilovemydog - "Why people may need to use formula is a personal decision, and in my opinion a private one."

On an individual level, no one needs to feel they have to share why they have used formula, you are right. It can be as private and personal as they wish.

But if everyone felt that way, we are not going to get much breastfeeding promotion done...we need to know how infant feeding information is shared, what people's beliefs are, where the lack of postnatal support with feeding is worst, and so on.

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 22:44:41

Hunker, is 'leper' a new one, too??

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 22:45:42

nelliesmum - is it a good thing for SMA to advertise direct to mothers with this DVD, do you think?

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 22:50:31

wilf isn't a man, she's a monkey. grin

kiskidee Sun 13-Jul-08 22:50:34

"I said that I did not consider the advertising of formula to be any more unethical than the advertising of most other things."

I think you mentioned thing like buggies and possibly cots. Yes they are marketed to propective parents and grandparents.' They are also subject to rigourous independent testing. formula isn't.

Babies will grow up happily without a cot or buggy. They cannot without being fed. How come we have access to independent unbiased reviews of such baby bumph but not of the stuff that so many babies' lives depend on?

still think formula and buggies are on equal ethical par?

I thought you'd say that.

hunkermunker Sun 13-Jul-08 22:50:45

Nope, leper gets wheeled out on occasion, iirc. Quite rare though.

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 22:53:39

Kiskidee that quote's from me and I didn't mention buggies or cots.

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 22:58:31

you're back, Nance. did you see my question about the stupid and the criminal?

kiskidee Sun 13-Jul-08 22:59:02

If the comparison wasn't made by you and you don't agree with it then apologies. It was made by one of the marketing apologists on this thread though.

So, if you don't think the marketing of formula can be equated to buggies or cots, then would you share with us what you think that its marketing is equivalent to?

Nancy66 Sun 13-Jul-08 23:00:32

Yes I did thanks. But don't want to keep repeating myself.

kiskidee Sun 13-Jul-08 23:01:29

oh, i see you have already said:
"It's no more unethical than the advertising of any product."

any other product. so by this statement of yours, it seems like the marketing of formula is equivalent to the marketing of buggies, cots, spot cream, toilet paper...

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 23:02:40

well, you didn't answer it, just continued your spat with tiktok. would you, please?

kiskidee Sun 13-Jul-08 23:03:51

lol. you don't want to keep repeating yourself while poor tiktok keeps repeating the same old question which you are refusing to answer just once.

how funny.

hunkermunker Sun 13-Jul-08 23:03:58

But you haven't really said anything of substance yet, Nancy - go on, give it a go.

Why is it OK to market a product designed for society's arguably most vulnerable members - a product that's inferior (by the manufacturers' own admittance) to one that can usually be obtained for free, given the right support and information?

And why is it OK for this marketing to suppress information that would empower women to make informed choices, not ones that amount to tearful "fuck, I have to feed this baby something"s?

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 23:05:09

By ExterminAitch on Sun 13-Jul-08 20:58:50
"My point was that the continued and aggressive campaign to completely ban all advertising of formula treats women who do want to FF as stupid or criminal."

can you explain that more clearly, nancy? in what way are women being treated as stupid or criminals? i genuinely don't understand. i ff, and am clever enough to know now that i was sold at in wickedly smart ways when i was absolutely at my most physically and emotionally vulnerable. this resulted in me spending a quid per box more than i ever needed to, on a product that gave my dd the shits for a year. i'd like to have been protected from that, just by having some clear information.
Contact the poster Contact mumsnet about this post By Nancy66 on Sun 13-Jul-08 20:55:38
Sabire - no I didn't say that at all. This thread (and you) are really boring me but I don't want to be misrepresented. I said that I did not consider the advertising of formula to be any more unethical than the advertising of most other things.
If you've interpreted that as me saying that new mothers should feed their kids Cherry Tango, well good for you.

TikTok I did not say that Kirstie Allsopp not doing her wretched DVD would make FF mothers feel like criminals. My point was that the continued and aggressive campaign to completely ban all advertising of formula treats women who do want to FF as stupid or criminal.

Here it was, you never did answer it, if you look. my question came immediately after yours, however, you responded to tiktok (some jibe about her parenting classes) and then left the thread til now. smile

ilovemydog Sun 13-Jul-08 23:17:27

Tik, my HV told me last week why more women don't breastfeed: because it's 'rammed down their throats' in hospital...'

Right - like so many mothers just have an urge to rebel hmm

But there is a valid point here. There is a dichotomy between lip service and practical advice.

I am pro breastfeeding, and only now am starting to know what I don't know, after 2 babies, or rather know the questions to ask.

kiskidee Sun 13-Jul-08 23:24:57

"I wonder if Kirstie has or is planning a parenting column in a publication somewhere?"

If i were her agent i would advise her to do an OK spread a-la-Jordan. no?

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 23:26:18

"There is a dichotomy between lip service and practical advice."

AMEN, ilove. amen.

MARGOsBeenPlayingWithMyNooNoo Sun 13-Jul-08 23:32:21

Please excuse me for being thick.

How would formula companies "market" their products if it became illegal to advertise it? By that I mean, would campaigner like there to be no price variations between makes? Just the ingredients and product names on the packet?

I'm curious to know what the ideal would be. Are there any links?

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 23:37:48

different people think different things. personally, although it could be fraught with difficulty, i'd like formula to be handed out by the NHS. unbranded, same price or free etc.

but that's never going to happen, obv. grin

what i would like, and should be achievable, is that the formula companies stick to the current rules re not promoting their product for babies under 6 mos. which, it would seem to me... a 'your baby's first days home from hospital' dvd heavily branded with SMA would seem to contradict.

hunkermunker Sun 13-Jul-08 23:41:58

Margo, that's interesting - my ideal would be no companies competing to make profit out of formula - because then the important thing necessarily becomes the profit and not the formula.

If you've seen the Novel Oils thread I posted recently, the manufacturer of one of the additives in formula admits it is dubious whether it affords any health benefit to infants - in fact, research suggests it can give babies diarrhoea and upset their stomachs quite badly - it's all about profit and giving the companies who add it to their formula competitive edge in the marketing stakes.

Quite apart from that, if advertising were to be outlawed, parenting magazines would be able to have more honest articles about breastfeeding and formula within their pages, which is not the current situation, for fear of formula advertising being pulled.

So my ideal would be decent research, freely available for all to peruse, more awareness of what formula is (see Harpsi's thread in this subject about 12 intelligent people in her antenatal class not knowing that formula's made from cows milk) and more effort made to actually make formula the best stuff it can be, rather than adding ingredient after ingredient and using a load of old flannel to try to get people to buy the milk so the shareholders have a nice fat dividend at the end of the year.

And probably other stuff too, which will occur to me once I click post...!

NormaStanleyFletcher Mon 14-Jul-08 00:01:35

<<marks place on thread t o come back and read>>

MARGOsBeenPlayingWithMyNooNoo Mon 14-Jul-08 00:10:07

Thanks hunker - I'll search for your thread.

And I am one of those people who really didn't stop and think about what formula was made of. blush

hunkermunker Mon 14-Jul-08 00:48:58

Thread's here, Margo - I'd be interested to hear what you think.

tiktok Mon 14-Jul-08 09:07:28

If companies follow the WHO code on marketing as a minimal ethical standard, they don't have to stop all marketing - it just has to be done in a way that protects the (often fragile) choice to breastfeed, and does not mislead or under-inform mothers who use formula.

It's fair enough for healthcare professionals to know about changes in formulation, for instance, and they need to know about them. Same goes for parents. But these changes should be health led so we don't get additives and processes for primarily commercial reasons, and the changes should be closely monitored and researched, with years (not weeks) of follow up after a change. There should be a system of reporting back (as there is with medicines) so side effects and problems can be monitored. Isn't it astonishing that there isn't? Currently, HCPs and mothers swap anecdotes about brand X causing wind, brand Y causing constipation, brand Z bringing babies out in a rash....and there is no consistency. Maybe these anecdotes have some basis in fact, and if so, someone should be collecting the information so it can be disseminated.

There needs to be some centralised control, with manufacturers making minimally-branded, non-commercial formula, with ingredients independently compared, and with the product widely available at a consistent low cost. If it turns out that one of the new ingredients is important for the health of ff babies, then it should be in all brands.

Everyone knows formula exists. The availability of it does not need to be advertised. People who need to use it because their babies are not breastfed, or not fully breastfed (for whatever reason), should be aware of the health effects of using it - not to feel criticised or undermined, but because we all need to know the effects of anything we use with babies in order to decide how much, how long, and if, to use it.

Formula manufacturers should not be permitted to market themselves or their products to pregnant and new mothers, as the cumulative effect of this is to undermine breastfeeding. There is no one single aspect that would 'change someone's mind' - so the celeb, the DVD, the ad, the pretty pack, the spurious sloganising, the 'baby club', the gift of a piece of branded tat to the health visitor, the 'care line etc etc all combine to work with each other, in a way that breastfeeding promotion can never achieve. It all needs to stop.

hunkermunker Mon 14-Jul-08 09:12:04

If an independent "reporting back" system was to be set up, Tiktok, would that be useful?

I'm thinking initially of a thread on my blog, I'll be honest...!

tiktok Mon 14-Jul-08 09:24:25

hunker, I don't think a blog system would be good enough, to be honest...though it would be an interesting start.

It really needs to be done as a properly constituted project.

Definitions of 'wind', 'constipation', 'diarrhoea', 'colic' and all the rest have to be agreed on, for a start.

I'd be interested to know what the medicines system is - I think docs have to fill in a 'yellow alert' or something, if they suspect a side-effect or adverse reaction of a medication, and these alerts are then looked at by some independent body. There are docs on mumsnet - maybe one of them will spot this and comment.

InTheDollshouse Mon 14-Jul-08 09:25:27

Perhaps a system whereby you can report adverse reactions to formula to the Food Standards Agency, similar to the way in which anybody can report an adverse drug reaction to the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency.

InTheDollshouse Mon 14-Jul-08 09:27:19

Just looking quickly at the MHRA page it looks like anyone can report an adverse drug reaction.

hunkermunker Mon 14-Jul-08 09:29:19

No, I realised it wasn't going to be the best way to do it as a longstanding thing, more of a way to raise awareness initially.

Agree that subjectivity of response to that sort of set-up would render it fairly useless clinically, but it would act as a starting point to raise the issue with politicians.

In fact, it would be an amazing thing in some ways to be able to flag with politicians - mothers powerless to report baby health problems so have had to rely on blog to leave their feedback.


tiktok Mon 14-Jul-08 09:36:42

Go for it, hunker

InTheDollshouse Mon 14-Jul-08 09:39:09

Would be quite timely with the Heinz Betapol stuff in the news.

hunkermunker Mon 14-Jul-08 09:39:51


hunkermunker Mon 14-Jul-08 09:43:42
littlepinkpixie Mon 14-Jul-08 12:00:31

Please retract that terrible slur against baboons angry


hunkermunker Mon 14-Jul-08 12:09:47

Sorry, baboons.

Clearly they'd do a better job.

Except possibly during blue bottom showing season.

TinkerBellesMum Mon 14-Jul-08 12:15:27

The difference between KA and NMA is that KA is “helping” people choose between products that someone is making money out of. That someone is lying about their product and being deliberately misleading. NMA is encouraging people to do what their bodies do for free, showing people how to find help if they’re having problems. Where is the bias? It comes from any mother’s body for free; there isn’t a choice which mother you choose to feed your baby. If you choose to BF then there is only once choice and it’s free.

I need to LOL very loudly at DoH paying someone to promote breastfeeding! I am about to start work for them doing just that and I really wish I was being paid!

Advertising formula is unethical because they’re not honest about their products and they never will be because they will always want to look like they’re the best if they’re going to sell and they will try to undermine breastfeeding like C&G(?) are doing in their latest advert. If Maclaren say “We make the best pushchair” it’s not going to harm your baby if you believe it and there’s probably not that much in it anyway but you can also open a copy of P&B and read what their panel thought of Maclaren compared to Graco. But we’re not talking about a luxury item or accessory, food is far more important than that and we’re talking about the sole food of a child for 6 months.

“Anything that gave us Mr Dreamy, Michael Portillo, should be celebrated”

Wouldn’t that be Mrs Portillo?

“How would formula companies "market" their products if it became illegal to advertise it?”

Change the word formula for cigarette then answer the question yourself. I’m not comparing formula to cigarettes, just one unadvertised product with another.

MrsPhas3 Mon 14-Jul-08 13:37:55

I've skipped the last few posts, so apologise if I'm repeating anything.

Have Which ever been asked to look into this?

Is there any way of signing up to support the stop of unethical advertising/lack of unbiased technical sound information (but not stop the formula)?

Is there no such thing as a BS or ISO on baby milk production?

I should declare my interest here: I am a bfer. With dd1 struggled at about 3 months, thought ff would be the answer, sent MrP out and he bought some (have absolutely no idea how he made that choice). It didn't help (she was a needy clingy baby) and went back to ebf after 3 days of ff. dd1 and dd2 both bf for 12 months. ds is now 17 weeks and ebf, but if something happened that meant I couldn't feed (lack of sleep making me rather irrationally pessimistic), I would like to think that MrP (or whoever was responsible for looking after my little man) chose the very best possible for him. At the moment, I really am not sure how they would do that.

hunkermunker Mon 14-Jul-08 13:54:11
hunkermunker Mon 14-Jul-08 14:03:16

She really is empty-headed

"Now Kirstie, a 35-year-old mother-of-one, is turning her scarily competent attentions to new mums, fronting a DVD that tells them what to do after "blast-off".

"Babies don't come with a manual," she says. "It seemed a fun idea to make one.""


tiktok Mon 14-Jul-08 14:09:04

Note how SMA get a plug at the end of the piece.

It's sad to read about her mum with breast cancer (now bone cancer ). No one has explained to Kirstie that not breastfeeding means both mothers and their babies are more at risk of developing breast cancer - she mustn't know this, surely, or she would have declined to front the DVD

MrsBadger Mon 14-Jul-08 14:17:26

(as a side issue I just wandered onto the Heinz site to read their 'Betapol' fluff and was confronted by the clickthrough popup starting


Before you view this information about Heinz Nurture baby formulas we would like you to read this important message:

Breast-feeding is best for your baby and a healthy, balanced diet is important when breast-feeding."



MatNanPlus Mon 14-Jul-08 15:19:14

hmm does make you wonder sometimes if these 'celebs' think how what they utter can be taken.

ilovemydog Mon 14-Jul-08 16:26:03

someone at mumsnet hq should invite her around for an online chat smile

I'm sure this has already been thought of, but would there be any benfit in (someone) producing the ultimate breastfeeding myth busting list? Along the lines of "Breastmilk and Formula are not the same", "Although it's important for your general health to eat a good diet, the quality of your breastmilk does not depend on it", "Stress does not affect supply", "You can drink while bf", "Your baby will feed a lot in the early days - it does NOT mean you don't have enough milk" etc

hunkermunker Mon 14-Jul-08 18:25:08

I tried...

Will do a more professional job though - like "you do NOT have to eat fish with heads on in order to produce quality bmilk" - complete with link to "bfing diet" pic.

<puts down fish's head joyfully>

looks good hunker, I had forgotten the drinking milk one - must just be a pipe from throat to nipple...oh hang on, must go through the de-cowmilkifier first.
I think it would be a really good idea to have them more promoted - briefly (with more explanation available) on a sheet you'er given by the hospital, or up on posters in doctors' surgeries etc. You know, as well as the "start of something special" ones. Would be good if they could just sort of worm their way in without you having to read too much.
Anyway, Stealth has spoken...make it happen!

Hey, nice blog, just started browsing, how come no-one's ever mentioned it before?


Mrs Badger: I saw that wording on some information leaflets a while ago (started a thread, natch grin) and I wrote to them about it. got a total BS reply. thought about complaining further but never got round to it blush

oh and, as a matter of interest, the couples I teach almost always say that you need to drink milk to make milk.

i must make fizzy, mil with a slight hint of red wne then

tiktok Mon 14-Jul-08 20:12:56

Nooooooo...you need to eat grass to make milk.

Well, cows have to.

MsDemeanor Mon 14-Jul-08 20:18:29

Can I reprise my Lactation, Lactation, Lactation joke? No? <crushed>
I love Kirstie but can MN have a live chat with Tiktok?

ilovemydog Mon 14-Jul-08 20:33:48

I feel like a cow at the moment...

I don't have breasts - I have udders, and they are so sore smile

am amused at lactation lactation lactation joke.

mmmmmmmmmmmmmm grass

hunkermunker Mon 14-Jul-08 21:06:07

We do have a live chat with Tiktok, frequently. Look, there she is! [points]

She is an enigma in manner of Mona Lisa though (only with a trifle more eyebrow, I bet).

LOL at de-cowmilkifier and yes, why has nobody ever mentioned my blog before, hmm? wink

[chews cud]

MARGOsBeenPlayingWithMyNooNoo Mon 14-Jul-08 21:07:27

Thanks Hunker - I've read the report and I'm dismayed but not altogether shocked to see the lengths these companies will go to to promote their brands.

I headed down the baby aisle in sainsburys today and saw one of the aptamil cartons and ther slogan on the front "inspired by breast milk" ..it should have then said "..but derived from cows udders"

or summat like that. wink

I feel a fool as I fell for this marketing, much like Aitch when I swapped from b/f to f/f - I chose the most expensive, nicest looking box, knowing some HCPs "recommended" this brand.

Who is the most powerful/persuasive movement wrt trying to change formula branding?

hunkermunker Mon 14-Jul-08 21:15:08

I'd have fallen for it too, I think, when I had DS1, had circumstances been different, Margo. No shame in it, I don't think - the info's not readily available; they don't want it to be. HVs were recommending it when I had DS1 and it was much-touted at M*B groups as "the" formula.

Baby Milk Action very proactive - you could become a member if you were interested. Have a look at the links under Infant Feeding Issues on the right hand side

The Aptamil packaging looks, as Tiktok says, more serious than the others'. And it has "Best Infant Milk" written on it - and not backed up anywhere else.

That's my issue with it as much as anything - they just say stuff and don't back it up - or they say it, but leave it for people to infer that what they're saying refers to their milk.

chequersandchess Sat 08-Nov-08 12:40:38

I'm ressurecting this thread just in case anyone is interested that I read an interview with Kirstie yesterday in which she mentioned she was b/feeding and expressing milk which was being couriered to her baby.

EyeballsintheSky Sat 08-Nov-08 13:08:02

I didn't read this thread before but you know what? If someone had given me cmot's advice in the second post, I wouldn't have a formula fed baby now, I'm sure. Just wanted to say that.

Upwind Sat 08-Nov-08 13:16:30

Kirstie Allsop spent the past few years working as a shill, ramping the property market. Last time I heard her on the radio, in her role as a Tory advisor on housing, she insisted that we have all benefitted from the massive increase in the cost of housing. "WE" clearly being people who matter, people who already owned property.

Why would anyone expect her to act in a remotely ethical way?

StealthPolarBANG Sat 08-Nov-08 13:23:56

Wow Eyeballs
I wish that message could get through to the people who need to know it - midwives, HVs, families
(note - my MW was fantastic but a lot of posts on here imply that's not usual)

Firepile Sat 08-Nov-08 14:01:47

Returning to the marketing issue. Does anybody have any information about whether the Scandanavian countries that have v high rates of bfing have more stringent restrictions on formula marketing then here?

My knowledge of tobacco advertising bans supports the idea that comprehensive marketing restrictions will reduce consumption - but are there any countries with more comprehensive marketing bans than the UK? And what has happened there?

Not comparing fags with formula, btw - but it is an example of a product where marketing restrictions have been introduced on public health grounds - which would alos be the rationale for an extended formula marketing ban.

StealthPolarBANG Sat 08-Nov-08 14:05:19

I think they do yes (have read it on here before) but don't have any links to back it up at the moment

tiktok Sat 08-Nov-08 14:29:08

Scandi countries restrict marketing of formula, yes, but this is just what I have heard from associates. They never were bottle feeding societies - breastfeeding wobbled in the 70s, like everywhere else in Europe, but never went 'out'.....the vast majority of Scandi babies were always breastfed at first and the figures show that formula was often intro'd at about 3 mths (I do have a reference for that, on paper, somewhere on my shelves) which shortened the period of bf.

This state of affairs was nipped in the bud sharpish and started to turn round in the ate 70s and 80s.

My info was that these countries were never thought to be worth marketing to, much. They were small and scattered populations, and until the 1970s, not especially affluent (Norway and Denmark were poor, after WW2, esp Norway).

Firepile Sat 08-Nov-08 14:38:14

Ah - thanks tiktok. No need to pursue this line further.

Although I think that the tobacco example shows us that:

a. ad bans change people's behaviour (by reducing comsumption) and improve population health
b. ad bans need to be as comprehensive as possible to have an effect as companies will exploit any loopholes available.

But anybody who's engaged with this debate from a public health perspective will already know this!

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