Our commitment to breastfeeding

New Marketing Guidelines

Medela is proud to have supported breastfeeding and human lactation since 1960. Human milk is not only key to a good start in life; it also provides an abundance of lifelong benefits. That is why our destiny at Medela is to enhance mother and baby health through the life-giving benefits of human milk. To fulfil our destiny, we have made it our goal to help every mother feed her baby human milk, everywhere in the world.

To reinforce our commitment to the goals of the WHO code and to ensure that our offering of products and services for mums and babies always promotes the benefits of breastfeeding, we have developed new marketing guidelines that provide a framework for our communication activities:

In-line with the WHO code, Medela will never support, commercialise or promote breastmilk substitutes.

Breastfeeding is and remains an imperative to Medela. Through our pump range, supporting consumables (including feeding products) and services, we aim to help mothers and babies to achieve their breastfeeding goals and maintain long-term breastfeeding despite any periods in which they are separated. Therefore, Medela offers a complete range of alternative breast milk feeding methods, including bottles and teats, our Supplemental Nursing System, Special Needs Feeder and cups.

All Medela communication materials whether written, audio, or visual, dealing with the feeding of infants and intended to reach pregnant women and mothers of infants and young children, will embody the following points:

  • Support of the WHO's recommendations on breastfeeding
  • Reinforcement of the benefits and superiority of breastfeeding vs formula feeding
  • Emphasis of Medela’s goal for every baby to receive breast milk as long as possible.
  • Recognition of the impact that the introduction of formula feeding can have on maternal milk supply

We will bring this to life by displaying on all materials dealing with the feeding of infants:

  • A consistent and easily recognisable WHO breastfeeding recommendations support icon, stating ”Supporting the WHO breastfeeding recommendations”
  • Next to this icon, there will be a link to a special area on our website: - www.medela.com/WHO providing the following information:
  1. Statement that Medela supports the WHO recommendation on breastfeeding duration - exclusive breastfeeding for the first 6 months with continued breastfeeding alongside other foods for 2 years and beyond as the best option for babies and their mothers.
  2. Details on the recommendations, reinforcing the benefits and superiority of breastmilk vs formula.
  3. Additional information on the impact that the introduction of formula feeding can have on maternal milk supply and explanation that feeding at the breast should be well established before introducing bottle feeding of breast milk.
  4. Educational material supporting breastfeeding mums in achieving their breastfeeding goals and and maintaining long-term breastfeeding.

There will be no advertising or other forms of promotion to the general public of feeding bottles and teats to the detriment of breastfeeding.
This means that:

  • All relevant materials will contain the icon and the web link as outlined above.
  • We do not idealise bottle-feeding (no use of statements next to bottles like: “Make breastfeeding simple”, “Easiest way to feed”, “Feeding was never so easy” etc)
  • We will not make any statement implying similarity with breastfeeding (“As good as breastfeeding”, “Teats shaped just like the nipple of the mums”; “Close to natural breastfeeding” etc).
  • The materials related to teats and bottles will not show babies drinking from bottles.
  • Storage bottles with milk will be shown in context with pumping.

We will not provide, directly or indirectly, to pregnant women, mothers or members of their families, samples of products within the scope of the Code. Samples of products within the scope of the Code will not be provided to health workers except for the purpose of professional evaluation or research at the institutional level.

Medela will not use facilities of health care systems to display products within the scope of the Code.

Medela will disclose to the institution to which a recipient health worker is affiliated any contribution made to him or on his behalf for fellowships, study tours, research grants, attendance at professional conferences, or the like and will ensure that similar disclosures are made by the recipient.

Breastfeeding will continue to be imperative to Medela, as we aim to help mothers and babies with their feeding journey, through our pump range, feeding products, essentials and services.