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Is there such thing as 'ethical' infant formula?

(18 Posts)
takefu Tue 24-Jul-07 18:31:48

Help- I am looking for an infant formula that isn't made by an evil company! Am I just dreaming, or is there such a thing?

DD is 4.5 months old and was exclusively breastfed until last week. She's been eating round the clock since she was born, and with serious postnatal depression I decided the best thing for everyone would be if we tried a bottle of formula before bedtime to see if it would help with her sleeping. It did- she slept through the night for the first time ever. And I felt much better for having a full night's uninterrupted sleep.

I would like to continue this, as it has helped my mental state immensely... but, it seems that all the major formula companies are horrible. The ingredients in formula also sound pretty vile.

Anyone know of an ethical/organic/less-evil-than-others formula brand? Thanks!

theUrbanDryad Tue 24-Jul-07 18:52:53

takefu - i'm not criticising your use of formula, but my ds went through a phase of waking almost constantly at 4.5 months, feeding round the clock etc etc. i found that bringing him into bed with us when he woke for the first feed of the night (about 1am) worked wonders.

i know co-sleeping isn't for everyone, and PND is far from a picnic, but i would recommend it from a personal POV as a way to get more sleep! am so very of your full night's sleep though!

i have googled ethical formula milk and come up with nothing, the trouble is, formula milk companies will always bill themselves as ethical, but - being the cynical cow i am - i am very sceptical. sorry.

FrannyandZooey Tue 24-Jul-07 18:57:07

Is it possible for you to express enough milk for someone else to do the night feeds occasionally? Sorry if this suggestion just seems like yet more work for you.

Like UD, I doubt the ethics of formula manufacturers Perhaps there is another way to get you more rest? Sorry things have been so tough for you.

ib Tue 24-Jul-07 18:58:02

When I had to top ds up I tried to look for something like this - ended uo buying the babybio one they sold in our local organic shop. Called babynat in the uk I believe.

takefu Tue 24-Jul-07 19:53:09

theUrbanDryad- thanks for the suggestion. We actually are a co-sleeping family and have tried all sorts of arrangements to help DD sleep better- we've tried keeping her next to me all night, we've tried just bringing her into our bed after the first feed, and we've even taken the side off the cot and have it right next to the bed. I think she sleeps better when she has a tiny bit of distance- when 'mum's all night diner' isn't open but mum's close by.

As for expressing... I've tried it so many times, but I can only get about an ounce out at one time. So, I would basically have to spend all day at home expressing every hour or two to get a full bottle for her. I suppose I could do this a few days a week but can't do it every day.

She's been a round-the-clock eater since we were in hospital... I think we've come to the conclusion that we all sleep best when DD is just next to our bed in the cot, and if she has a very full tummy before bed. We've even tried giving her a little bit of baby rice at night, but even that didn't work. The formula, although not ideal, seems to be what's getting her to sleep longer stretches.

takefu Tue 24-Jul-07 19:56:28

ps- ib- just looked up 'babynat'- seems to be available in our town so I might try that...

aloha Tue 24-Jul-07 19:57:43

With ds I used Babynat, organic baby formula with cold pressed organic vegetable oils for LCPS and Essential fatty acids etc, plus it comes in the prettiest tins! I'm shallow like that.
Found this about the company

Browsing By Brand
WHY WE SELL IT: We believe Babynat are one of the best brands of baby food products available. A very ethical company who will use organic and/or sustainable ingredients. The suppliers of Babynat products will only use animal products if the animals are either reared organically or reared or caught by sustainable methods. They will not use ingredients that contain artificial additives, colouring or preservaties (with the excpetion of additives allowed under orgnaic regulations, for example sodium bicarbonate). They will not sell any product with genetically modified (GM) ingredients or GM derivaties. They do not and will not use air freight for any products they import into the UK. They follow an excellent environmental and fair trading policy

aloha Tue 24-Jul-07 19:58:20

aloha Tue 24-Jul-07 19:59:43

Ds seemed to like it too.

FrannyandZooey Tue 24-Jul-07 21:07:43

Oh I hope things work out for you takefu. It is so hard to deal with day to day life if you aren't getting enough sleep

lulu25 Wed 25-Jul-07 10:22:32

Hipp formula - organic; doesn't contain fish oil; does contain palm oil but claims it is sustainably produced by small farmers; available in Sainers.

My son won't drink it though...

tiktok Wed 25-Jul-07 10:45:56

Ethical formula isn't just to do with the ingredients, but with the way it's promoted and marketed.

If Babynat obeyed the WHO code with its marketing, then it could be ethical.

It doesn't obey the code - the wording on its website is almost certainly illegal and it has a depiction of a baby on the package of its follow on milk. It also promotes its rice cereal for babies from age 4 mths.

Must try harder!

tiktok Wed 25-Jul-07 10:47:23

takefu - it must be a difficult situation to be in. I think there is a pretty level playing field with regard to ethics, so prob best just to choose whichever formula you feel helps you at this time.

Hope you continue to feel better.

takefu Wed 25-Jul-07 11:23:40

Thanks everyone! Where can I find the WHO guidelines for marketing- on their website? I'm now very interested in this...

By the way, the formula may not be the magic ticket. DD woke up at 4:45 Monday night and 3:30 last night wanting a full feed! May go back to fully bfing anyway. (Am trying to express at night just in case, although I don't get much out!)

tiktok Wed 25-Jul-07 11:37:09

They are on the web in several places, takefu....try the Baby Milk Action site for a link. Or google.

oliveoil Wed 25-Jul-07 11:41:47

What is wrong with a picture of a baby on formula?

tiktok Wed 25-Jul-07 12:06:53

Depictions of an infant on formula are illegal under UK law and under the WHO code. This is prob why it's on the Babynat follow on and not the 'infant' milk.

The reason is historic, really. If you look at how manufacturers have illustrated their packaging in the past, you see chubby-cheeked, glowing with health, smiling tots, and this was thought to be 'idealising', especially in cultures (which include our own!) where chubbiness in a baby is a desirable quality which equals robust health (nothing wrong with chubbiness in a baby at all, but some babies are naturally unchubby, and their mothers worry....).

tiktok Wed 25-Jul-07 12:08:57

It reminds me of the story in today's paper about L'Oreal now being forbidden to advertise its mascara using a model with false eyelashes and saying this is how your eyelashes will's all part of communicating the truth to consumers, and without laws, people with products to sell are cavalier about it.

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