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To send this email to Tommee Tippee and be appalled that the advice they are giving?

(115 Posts)
TheDetective Tue 26-Feb-13 13:15:17

Copied and pasted from the email I have just sent...

"I visited your consumer site, as a parent, but I am also a Midwife.

I am contacting you because you are giving incorrect advice regarding the correct way to prepare infant formula.

Your website states:

'Health guidelines recommend you make up bottles one at a time. It may be easier to store the cooled, boiled water sealed in the bottles and then add the formula at feeding time.'

This goes directly against Department of Health Guidelines. A copy of which can be found here:

The correct advice is:

'To reduce the risk of infection, make up each feed as your
baby needs it, using boiled water at a temperature of 70 o
C or above. The step-by-step guide shows you how to do this.
Water at this temperature will kill any harmful bacteria that
may be present. Remember to let the feed cool before you
give it to your baby.'

This is followed up with the following information:

'Do not boil water in advance and store it in sterilised bottles
in the fridge for later use. The water needs to be hot when the
powdered infant formula is added, to kill any harmful bacteria
that may be present.'

Please can you explain why you are advising parents directly against the government guidelines for making up first stage formulas.
I would like to know where you found the information to display on your website.

There are some formulas which require preparing with cooled boiled water, but these are specialist milks, and the majority of parents and carers will not be using these milks.

The advice you are providing can and does make babies ill. I am very shocked that you would give such ill-informed advice.

I would appreciate a speedy response to my question."

Was I being unreasonable? I'm quite annoyed at them really! Am off to see what other bottle manufacturers websites say...! One woman mission here!

galwaygirl Tue 26-Feb-13 13:20:40

Wow, YAsoNBU.
I think there's a huge problem with lack of information about formula feeding in the UK but can't quite believe they are giving out such dangerous information!

notso Tue 26-Feb-13 13:34:15

I think there needs to be a better campaign about safely preparing formula.
Not one new parent I have spoken to in RL is aware that you have to use hot water, most have cooled boiled water then top it up with boiling water to make the milk ready to drink. Most of them say
"the midwife/health visitor/my Mum/Gran/Friend said this was ok"

stoatie Tue 26-Feb-13 13:41:51

I find it worrying that so few parents are aware of the DH guidance (which has been in place for some years now). I always discuss them with new parents (backing up with leaflets) often discussing in depth - it is frustrating that the guidance doesn't cover how to take feeds if you are planning a day out for example - which then leads to people coming up with "solutions" which may not be correct.

I always explain the reasoning behind the guidance - that unless the water is 70 degrees it will not kill off any bacteria that might be present in the formula - as often this clarifies why the guidance was developed.

The Tommee Tippee site needs changing immediately (which Boots did recently when they had a badly worded piece regarding feeding)

glenthebattleostrich Tue 26-Feb-13 13:45:11

I ebfed my DD and I knew how to make up a bottle correctly, pretty disgusted that a company which manufactures baby's bottles would give such inaccurate and potentially dangerous advice.

StrawberriesTasteLikeLipsDo Tue 26-Feb-13 13:48:00

Ironically this is the advice the HV gave me... When I pointed out this is incorrect she said "oh thats just fussiness as a few babies got salmonella" shockshock I took the MN route of nod, disregard...

stoatie Tue 26-Feb-13 13:48:06

ah - I stand corrected - the guidelines do cover making up feeds away from home (didn't used to ) - yay

Thankfully I was giving correct advice - ie to take boiled water in flask and make feed when needed.

IneedAgoldenNickname Tue 26-Feb-13 13:50:52

Yanbu, but I don't know anyone in rl who follows the guidelines. Because they say "the midwife/health visitor/my Mum/Gran/Friend said this was ok"

choceyes Tue 26-Feb-13 13:52:01

wow YANBU at all! Please update and tell us what response you get.

TheDetective Tue 26-Feb-13 13:52:16

Was just about to say they do now Stoatie!

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Tue 26-Feb-13 13:52:50

I think there is a big issue with the phrase "cooled boiled water"

I think the people who write this stuff mean boiled then collect to 70deg.

But the people who read it think it means boiled then cooled to room temp /fridge.

Either way is is at the very best unclear, so we'll done for writing!

tethersend Tue 26-Feb-13 13:55:56

They are adhering to the guidelines in Australia and NZ if that helps.

JaquelineHyde Tue 26-Feb-13 13:56:59

I used to work for Tommee Tippee as head of UK customer service grin

I left quite a few years ago so can't give up to date info, but I can say that this has pretty much been the advice since the new website was launched in 2005.

I don't know why they haven't updated the info inline with the change in guidelines but I suspect it has just been over looked. Not a very good reason I know but when Boots and other midwives are still giving out the old guidelines it's hardly surprising is it.

They will look into it, confirm the new info you have shown them and get a tech bod to update. I suspect you will get a standard apology email but very little in way of an explanation other than what I have already said.

Keep us posted when they reply.

TheSurgeonsMate Tue 26-Feb-13 13:57:15

Well, yes, there is a big issue with the phrase "cooled boiled water" because it's also bandied about in advice about cleaning your baby - presumably you use pretty cool water if you're trying to wash their gunky eyes or something, not water at 70 degrees.

JaquelineHyde Tue 26-Feb-13 13:59:41

I'm a little confused I have just been to the Tommee Tippee page and it all appears to be correct.


Can you provide the link to the page you have read?

tethersend Tue 26-Feb-13 14:01:04

From their website:

"Making up a Feed in Advance

Warm milk is a breeding ground for bacteria so making up bottle feeds in advance is no longer advised. As it is not easy to anticipate when a baby is going to wake up (and therefore when to boil the kettle and let the water cool), it may be easier to put a measured amount of formula aside in a sealed container (Milk Powder Dispensers are ideal) and have a flask of cooled boiled water ready to make up the feed. You can re heat the cooled boiled water and then add the formula prior to feeding. You should only mix the formula once you are happy the water is at the correct temperature as this minimises the amount of time within which bacteria can grow."

Have they changed it? Because that advice, although confusing, does not seem to me to contravene the UK guidelines.

JaquelineHyde Tue 26-Feb-13 14:02:08

Have you maybe read the info from the US or OZ page?

DinglebertWangledack Tue 26-Feb-13 14:02:44

I used to sterilise bottles, boil kettle, cool it down for 30-45 mins then fill up the six bottles, then add powder to a bottle as required. Any I hadn't used in 24 hours I threw away. My daughter is completely healthy, but I am guessing people are going to hurl vitrol at me for doing it that way.

TheSeniorWrangler Tue 26-Feb-13 14:04:23

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

JaquelineHyde Tue 26-Feb-13 14:05:56

Aaah so they do have the correct advice on the website but have conflicting acive else where.

Just a simple mistake, I'm sure they will rectify it asap.

TheDetective Tue 26-Feb-13 14:06:08

Here you go smile

Bottle feeding dos and don'ts

It is their UK site.

TheDetective Tue 26-Feb-13 14:06:35

Pipped me to the post their Senior!

TheSeniorWrangler Tue 26-Feb-13 14:07:14

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TheDetective Tue 26-Feb-13 14:08:08

It isn't a simple mistake when it can cause very ill babies. These stomach bugs can kill babies from incorrectly prepared formula.

For a major company to be giving advice like that, they should be sure of it before publishing surely?

TheDetective Tue 26-Feb-13 14:09:51

If doing it that method, the safest way is to rapidly cool, or flash cool. So run under cold water. I personally put mine in iced water (have ice packs to put in a bowl with the bottle) for 10 minutes, then fridge it.

It shouldn't be hot or warm when it goes in the fridge, or it will bring up the temperature of your fridge, and the bacteria can then have a party!

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