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And yet retail giant Babies R Us took to Facebook this week, with this message for their 27,000 followers: “We know this week is National Breastfeeding Week but we also know that there are lots of parents out there that bottle feed.
Whatever your circumstances, we cannot recommend the Tommee Tippee Perfect Prep Machine enough.” Cue outrage.
We need to be asking: if a billion pound industry has a vested interest in our choosing bottle over breast, are our choices truly free?
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Seeming to support breastfeeding gives formula companies a chance to reach this target market.
Says lactation consultant Emma Pickett: “Formula companies have leaflets, areas of their websites and more claiming to give helpful advice on breastfeeding, but which often makes it sound difficult.
On the other hand there’s very little money to be made out of breastfeeding. 11 myths busted You might have imagined though, that those keen to push formula would steer clear of Breastfeeding Week.
To some, a successfully breastfeeding mum represents lost income. Not a time to promote it, you wouldn’t have thought.
From age one children can have cows milk - growing-up milks are just a rip off.” The products may be a rip off, but their adverts, which almost always praise breastfeeding, are a chance to get the formula brand imprinted on everyone’s unconscious.Perfect temperature, perfect milk, no faffing with bottles.” Perhaps by way of response, Babies R Us then tried again.“It’s National Breastfeeding Week, choose from our wide range of breastfeeding products”.If you eat burgers and cream cakes every day, your breast milk is just fine.” There’s always controversy around breastfeeding and at no time more than National Breastfeeding Week.Like all parenting choices, perceived judgement is keenly felt, and the final refrain of debates is often “Everyone should be free to make their own choices.” But this can distract from a much-needed deeper analysis.