Maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health

Home-modified animal milk for replacement feeding: is it feasible and safe?

Discussion paper prepared for HIV and infant feeding technical consultation, 25-27 October 2006


World Health Organization

Publication details

Number of pages: 9
Publication date: 2006
Languages: English



Breastfeeding is by far the best feeding option for babies whose mothers are HIV-negative or whose status is unknown. For infants of HIV positive mothers who choose not to breastfeed, UN guidance on HIV and infant feeding issued in October 2000 include the use of home-modified animal milk as one of the feeding options. However, since the guidance was issued, concerns have been raised on the suitability of home-modified animal milk for replacement feeding for infants aged less than six months.

This document reviews the experience with the use of home-modified animal milk and possible ways to improve its nutritional composition. It indicates that home-modified animal milk should no longer be recommended for replacement feeding for infants aged less than 6 months, except as a short-term stop gap measure in situations where a suitable breast-milk substitute is not available.

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