Nestlé releases report on breastmilk substitutes marketing practices


Nestlé has published a new report on marketing practices for breastmilk substitutes, which covers the company’s World Health Organisation (WHO) code compliance system. 

The report highlights what the company does to address cases of non-compliance when they are discovered.  

According to the FMCG brand, it has improved its system to report compliance concerns by launching its global internal and external reporting channel ‘Speak Up’ to bring its attention to complaints of non-compliance. 

The platform is also operated by an independent third party to ensure anonymity.  

The move follows criticism the company has faced regarding its marketing practices for its breastmilk substitutes. 

READ MORE: Nestlé acquires The Bountiful Company core brands

The most significant instance was in the early 1970s when organisations including War on Want published allegations that Nestlé was using exploitative marketing practices to convince customers to feed their infants “unsafe” formula. 

The food manufacturer has since seen criticism for advertising the health benefits of baby formula against reports that breastfeeding is healthier.  

Nestlé, which is currently in compliance with the WHO code, said that it has performed virtual audits and compliance monitoring during the pandemic over the last year to ensure transparent ethical practices.  

“Nestlé values the trust our consumers place in us, and we seek to maintain this trust through our commitment to a strong ethical culture”, Nestlé head of group legal, corporate governance and compliance Leanne Geale said.  

“Nestlé actively encourages employees, business partners and stakeholders to report non-compliant behaviour so we can act decisively and prevent their recurrence.” 

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