CICH accepts Nestlé sponsorship
We were shocked to see the Nestlé logo proudly displayed as a corporate sponsor in the Winter 2002 edition of the Canadian Institute for Child Health’s newsletter.
A letter expressing our concern to CICH chairperson Judy Erola prompted this response:
“The decision (to accept Nestlé sponsorship) is consistent with our view that corporations are part of the global community and that working with corporations can be an effective method to influence long range change. We are very clear that our corporate relationships will not influence our health policy positions, which we make very transparent.
“…CICH is of the belief that in our changing world, we can work closely with industry without compromising our health policy activities or advocacy.”
“Nestlé in particular has consistently and flagrantly violated the World Health Organization’s International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes in developing and developed countries. Corporations have had a significant impact on the global community. These violations have proven to affect infant feeding practices, which ultimately put babies at risk of disease and death. For your reference I have enclosed a copy of the IBFAN publication, “Breaking the Rules, Stretching the Rules 2001.” It carefully outlines how Nestlé and other companies are consistently in violation of the Code.
“Nestlé’s leadership role in the global undermining of breastfeeding doesn’t stop there. Nestlé has the largest global market share of the infant feeding market. As the market leader, when Nestlé targets new mothers and pregnant women with the promotion and advertising of its infant formulas, other companies follow suit. These violations contribute to the estimated 1.5 million children who die annually because they are not breastfed. (World Health Organization and UNICEF estimate.)
“…In my opinion, your association with Nestlé, a corporation that repeatedly put profits over the well being of our most vulnerable children - young infants - contradicts this statement. In light of all of the above, I urge you to seriously reconsider your acceptance of Nestlé’s sponsorship.”
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