Health department condemns sharing of homemade baby formula recipes

22 July 2021 - 22:08
The health department has condemned calls for donations of infant formula and the distribution of homemade formula recipes on social media.
The health department has condemned calls for donations of infant formula and the distribution of homemade formula recipes on social media.
Image: Wendy Knowler

The health department says calls for donations for infant formula are illegal.

Such calls are being made as some provinces have reported a shortage of baby milk after recent violent protests and looting in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.

 “The department calls upon all stakeholders to refrain from and stop posting and sharing misinformation around the calls for commercial infant formula donation and infant feeding that undermines breastfeeding,” said department spokesperson Popo Maja.

“The government would like to remind stakeholders that, by law, no person may promote infant formula,” he added.

Maja said there has been an acute shortage of infant formula and other essential food supplies in some provinces.

“Government has regulatory frameworks for the management of commercial infant formula. It is therefore recommended that infant formula donations should be made through the provincial departments of health.”

The department also condemned the use of homemade infant formula as it can harm babies.

“These homemade infant formula recipes might not contain enough or too much of some nutrients and put infants at risk of getting diarrhoea and other sicknesses.

“We therefore, urge mothers who are not breastfeeding their babies, not to use these recipes or any other unsuitable products such as coffee or tea creamers, tea with/without sugar or condensed milk,” Maja said.

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