Trump says United States had opposed formula limits, not breastfeeding

12 July, 2018, 20:06 | Author: Lillian Steele
  • Ric Francis via ZUMA

The U.S. delegation attempted, unsuccessfully, to derail a resolution on the topic of breastfeeding at the World Health Organization's annual meeting in May, The New York Times reported over the weekend.

Canadian breastfeeding advocates say they're stunned by an especially aggressive USA attempt to water down breastfeeding protections at a spring United Nations meeting.

Research has shown that mother's milk contains far more nutrients that are necessary for a baby's health than infant formula.

In Geneva, delegates from Ecuador initially sponsored a resolution aiming to educate governments and new mothers about the health impacts of breastfeeding versus formula feeding.

The primary scientific issue according to WHO, backed by a fairly broad scientific consensus, is that infants fed exclusively on breast milk for the first six months of their life face improved health outcomes.

"The resolution as originally drafted placed unnecessary hurdles for mothers seeking to provide nutrition to their children", the spokesperson said. When that largely failed, the USA turned to threats-demanding that Ecuador's delegation refrain from introducing the bill as planned or be targeted with trade measures and cuts to military aid, the Times reports. Mothers and babies together result in longer breastfeeding duration rates. "Many women need this option because of malnutrition and poverty", Trump wrote.

Limiting inaccurate infant formula marketing is most necessary in some of the poorest parts of the world, according to a Guardian investigation published earlier this year in partnership with the worldwide nongovernmental organization Save the Children. Many of them, however, asked to remain anonymous because they fear US retaliation. But then the delegation from the United States threw a wrench into things. "What happened was tantamount to blackmail", she said.

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According to the New York Times, the USA delegation wanted to water down the resolution in a bid to protect the interests of infant formula manufacturers on a global scale. Now, this is a complicated issue that my childless man brain is simply not qualified to opine on, so here is Republican #NeverTrump operative Liz Mair to explain why access to formula is important. However, American delegates took the side of corporate formula makers over breastfeeding mothers.

Those risks include creating the formula precisely as instructed, storing it safely and cleaning and sanitizing bottles so the infant doesn't get sick.

Nestlé, Abbott Laboratories and others, in their relentless drive for profits, are trying to expand the $11.5 billion world market in baby formula.

World Health Organization has long supported breastfeeding, and years of research has found breast milk to be healthier than other substitutes.

It remains puzzling as to why the liberal media blame US protections of formula companies, as even The Times had to note: "Although lobbyists from the baby food industry attended the meetings in Geneva, health advocates said they saw no direct evidence that they played a role in Washington's strong-arm tactics".

Breast milk can change to meet a child's needs.

At the same assembly, USA leaders sided with the pharmaceutical industry and fought unsuccessfully against an effort to help poor countries get access to lifesaving medications.

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