Marketing of Breast‑milk Substitutes: National Implementation of the International Code

Status Report 2020



This report provides updated information on the status of implementing the International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes (BMS) and subsequent relevant World Health Assembly (WHA) resolutions (“the Code”) in countries. It presents the legal status of the Code, including to what extent its provisions have been incorporated in national legal measures. The report highlights specific provisions considered to be particularly instrumental in addressing and eliminating promotion of BMS, feeding bottles and teats to health workers and in health facilities.

Moreover, this 2020 report highlights the continued legal shortcomings of implementing the Code in many countries. The new expanded checklist and scoring algorithm presented have allowed WHO, UNICEF and IBFAN to undertake a more comprehensive and objective analysis of countries’ efforts to translate the Code into national legal measures. While progress has been made, far too few countries have legal measures in place to effectively stop marketing that undermines breastfeeding. Countries should analyse and address weaknesses or gaps in their existing legislation and act accordingly.

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