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    035398

    Marketing infant foods in four developing nations: trends since the W.H.O. code.

    Post JE; Smith RA; Solimano G

    In: Research Consortium for the Infant Feeding Study. The determinants of Infant feeding practices: preliminary results of a four-country study. New York, N.Y., Population Council, 1984 Apr 45-56. (International Programs Working Paper No. 19)

    The World Health Assembly, governing body of the World Health Organization (WHO), adopted a Code of Marketing of Breast Milk Substitutes in May, 1981. The question of what impact legislative, reggulatory, and voluntary actions by government and industry have had on the commercial marketing of infant food in Colombia, Indonesia, Kenya, and Thailand is addressed. The research was conducted between 1981 and 1983. This study of marketing activities was intended to analyze the direct effects of marketing activities and the interaction of marketing with other factors found to influence infant feeding practices. Research objectives were organized around 3 basic questions. 1) What are the characteristics of current marketing practices and strategies of infant food companies? 2) What factors account for the current marketing environment for infant foods? 3) What is the intensity of promotional activity at this time? Data was collected through interviews and a cross-sectional survey of mothers and infants. There have been 5 important trends in the way the marketing of infant foods has changed since 1981. They are: 1) an increased amount of price competition; 2) increased product availability; 3) discontinuance of consumer-oriented mass media advertising; 4) extensive promotion of commercial infant foods to health care workers, and through them to consumers; and 5) continued distribution of infant formula samples to mothers, directly or indirectly, many of whom live in a high-risk environment.
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