action to stop these violations of the International
Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes. The people responsible
have names and addresses - call on them to market their products
tables below give details of some recent violations. The date
when the violation was last reported to Baby Milk Action or confirmed
to be current is given. The violation reference is for Baby Milk
Action's records. Please quote it if forwarding correspondence
to us, if possible.
evidence of malpractice in Pakistan as administration moves ahead
with new law
A former Nestlé employee, Syed Aamar Raza, has provided internal
company documents exposing Nestlé baby food marketing malpractice
in Pakistan (see March 2000 action
sheet). This has received publicity around the world prompting
Nestlé to commission an external audit of its company in Pakistan,
known as Nestlé Milkpak. Baby Milk Action offered to provide
information to the auditors, but this was ignored. When the
report was launched in London on 23rd May, the auditors admitted
that they had agreed with Nestlé not to make contact with independent
organisations or with Mr. Raza.
Had the auditors contacted us in advance they would have known
that UNICEF wrote to Nestlé in November 1997, criticising Nestlé's
narrow interpretation of the Code. Unfortunately the auditors
appear to have used Nestlé's incorrect interpretation for their
We are also disappointed that the auditors did not even attempt
to verify the truth of Mr. Raza's evidence, stating: "This
study does not represent an attempt to investigate any of the
allegations made, either by The Network or by Mr. Raza."
Instead the auditors looked at a snapshot of current documents
and interviewed Nestlé staff and health workers from a list
provided by Nestlé.
The auditors did find some Nestlé violations, but dismiss them
as insignificant. For example, gifts to doctors are judged to
be promoting "goodwill" rather than "inducements to promote
products." While Nestlé marketing staff claimed to do nothing
wrong they told the auditors that their competitors frequently
violate the marketing requirements. The Executive Summary from
the audit report, which includes this accusation, is on Nestlé's
website - http://www.babymilk.nestle.com.
Below we ask you to write to the companies implicated by the
claims made by Nestlé marketing staff.
Independent evidence demonstrates that these companies, along
with Nestlé, violate the International Code and Resolutions.
At the World Health Assembly in Geneva in May 2000 it was reported
that the new administration in Pakistan is moving ahead with
introducing legislation which will provide a way to stop the
malpractice. We again ask you to write to support the introduction
You could send a
message along the following lines to encourage implementation
of the draft law to Baby Milk Action's partner organisation: The
Network-Association for Rational Use of Medication in Pakistan,
60-A, St: 39, F-10/4, Islamabad, Pakistan. Fax: +92 51 291552:
It is reported that at the World Health Assembly in May your
organisation The Network - Association for Rational use of
Medication in Pakistan congratulated the Pakistan administration
for taking action to bring in a law regulating the marketing
of baby foods. I wish to support this initiative.
Monitoring of the baby food industry demonstrates violations
of the World Health Assembly marketing requirements around the
world. Your report Milking
Profits documents malpractice by Nestlé Milkpak in
Pakistan. In the UK in May a report commissioned by Nestlé,
involving the firm Enterprise and Development Consulting, Pakistan,
was launched in response to your report. Nestlé's report
states that: "There is a view prevailing amongst [Nestlé
Milkpak] Medical Delegates and ADEs that their competitors violate
the Code frequently."
The sooner the law is introduced, the sooner all companies
will have no choice but to act responsibly.
Wyeth, NUMICO, Meiji and Morinaga implicated by Nestlé
Wyeth, NUMICO, Meiji, Morinaga
Nestlé staff accuse competitors in Pakistan of "frequent
In 1998 the Pakistan IBFAN group The Network - Association
for Rational Use of Medication in Pakistan, published a
monitoring report called Feeding
Fiasco. The report was the result of monitoring in 33 cities
and showed systematic marketing malpractice from the baby food
companies operating in Pakistan. Nestlé marketing staff
have now confirmed that companies violate the marketing requirements,
although they contradict the independent evidence by claiming
they do nothing wrong themselves. Please write to the companies
operating in Pakistan, asking them to abide by the International
Code and Resolutions.
for letters to the men responsible:
- Mr. Duane L. Burnham, Chief Executive Officer, Abbott Laboratories,
1 Abbott Park Road, Abbott Park, IL 60064-3500, USA. Fax:+1
847 938 1342
- Mr. John R. Stafford, CEO, Wyeth (American Home Products),
PO Box 8616, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19101, USA. Fax +1 610
Klaas de Jonge, Director, Numico, Rokkeveemseweg 49, 2712
PJ Zoetermeet, Netherlands. Fax: +31 79 3539 620
- Hishashi Nakayama, President, Meiji, 2-3-6 Kyobashi, Chuo-ku,
Tokyo 104-8381, Japan. Fax: +81 3 3281 4717
- Gota Morinaga, President and CEO, 5-33-1 Shiba, Minato-ku,
Tokyo 108-8403, Japan. Fax: +81 3 3769 6129
A report on baby food marketing in Pakistan commissioned by
Nestlé was recently launched in the UK. The Executive Summary
can be found on Nestlé's website (http://www.babymilk.nestle.com).
Nestlé Pakistan staff accuse their competitors of violating
the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes.
The summary states: "There is a view prevailing amongst [Nestlé]
Medical Delegates and Area Detailing Executives that their competitors
violate the Code frequently."
As your company operates in Pakistan it is implicated by this
The campaigning group Baby Milk Action also states that your
company violates the marketing requirements, but dismisses Nestlé's
claim that its staff do not.
Please take action to bring your activities into line with
on the EU hearings
As we have reported in the past, the baby food industry
will be investigated by the European Parliament's Committee on
Development and Cooperation soon. It is very important that MEPs
are encouraged to attend the Committee to hear the evidence. It
is likely that there will be debates in the Parliament to address
the concerns arising from the hearings. If you live within the
European Union, please write to your representatives in the European
I am writing to encourage you to attend the Committee on Development
and Cooperation meeting scheduled for 13th July in Brussels
(date to be confirmed). The Committee will be investigating
the baby food industry as part of its hearings on EU Standards
for European Enterprises Operating in Developing Countries.
I think it is very important that European companies abide
by the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes
and subsequent, relevant Resolutions of the World Health Assembly.
According to UNICEF, reversing the decline in breastfeeding
could save the lives of 1.5 million infants around the world
Complaints have been made to the European Commission about
the marketing activities of a number of European businesses,
but no action has so far been taken. I hope you will be able
to attend the meeting to find out more and will do what you
can to end irresponsible marketing of breastmilk substitutes.
The contact details of your country's MEPs are on http://www.europarl.eu.int/members/en/default.htm
If you are in the UK, you can telephone the European Parliament
Office on 020 7227 43000.
can be a Code Monitor.