Nutrition

Consultation on the public draft of the Clarification and guidance on inappropriate promotion of foods for infants and young children

(This online consultation is now closed)

WHO, led by the Department of Nutrition for Health and Development (NHD), has launched an online consultation on the discussion paper for the "Clarification and guidance on inappropriate promotion of foods for infants and young children". The purpose of this online consultation is to solicit comments on the draft clarification and guidance. These comments will be taken into consideration prior to informal dialogue with civil society and private sector (17 August 2015), and informal consultation with Member States (18 August 2015).

Discussion paper

This discussion paper provides a set of recommendations that countries and other stakeholders can use to ensure that promotion of foods and beverages for infants and young children is ethically sound, is guided by appropriate, enforceable legal and regulatory measures, and does not undermine optimal nutrition, including exclusive and continued breastfeeding. Following the consultative process and informal dialogue, the draft document will be submitted to the WHO Executive Board in preparation, to be discussed at its 138th session in January 2016 in preparation for consideration by Member States at the Sixty-ninth World Health Assembly (WHA) in May 2016.

Background

WHO recommends that infants should be exclusively breastfed for the first 6 months of life and thereafter receive nutritionally adequate and safe complementary foods while breastfeeding continues for up to 2 years of age or beyond. However, there is growing concern and evidence that inappropriate promotion of breast milk substitutes and some commercial complementary foods and beverages for infants and young children has been undermining progress in optimal infant and young child feeding.

In response to this concern, in 2010 the WHA urged Member States to end inappropriate promotion of foods for infants and young children, and in 2012 requested the Director-General to provide clarification and guidance on the issue. A Scientific and Technical Advisory Group (STAG), convened by WHO, subsequently defined what constitutes inappropriate promotion of foods for infants and young children.

In May 2014, the WHA further requested the Director-General to complete the work before the end of 2015 for consideration by Member States at the Sixty-ninth World Health Assembly May 2016. The STAG reconvened in June 2015 to draft the Guidance in the form of seven recommendations.

Participants are encouraged to provide comments on the Scope of the document and the seven recommendations by completing the online form (see below form). Please send any questions on the online consultation process to nutrition@who.int. The online consultation is open from 20 July to 10 August 2015. For transparency purposes, comments will be made available publicly on this website.

(This online consultation is now closed)

ONLINE FORM