Okay, so my head is going ninety right now. I feel very let down and I feel I’ve let myself down and my readers, or should I say my followers on snapchat who seen where I was yesterday.
The other day the kids got a wonderful little invite to attend the world’s first toddler cinema premier with ToddleBox. Cool, right? ToddleBox is a website that shares parenting advice and recipes tailored for kids aged 1-3.
Anyways. In a follow-up email of our attendance, I was told there would be a ‘nutritionist’ giving a little talk, grand. But, this nutritionist worked for a big company, a company I now learnt makes two brands of formula. Hmmm… Alarm bells. Why would they have anything to do with the launch of a toddler-aimed website that shares recipes? Weird.
I questioned it, I was assured and I decided we’d go. The kids were going to have a ball. And they were showing Jungle Book. I love Jungle Book. During the talk, the nutritionist mentioned a percentage of toddlers in Ireland are not getting the required amounts of iron and Vitamin D. Okay. We live in Ireland and lack the sunshine and in all honesty what toddler eats lots of iron rich foods, I know I struggle. Fussy eaters and all that. But then I opened the kid’s goodie bags and there it was the big red flag. A formula brands name slapped across the kid’s goodies for the movie they were about to watch.
My kids ate them of course. I dare you to try to take treats, albeit healthy-ish ones off a three-year-old, a one-year-old and a nine-month-old. I’m certainly not brave enough.
So now I question why. Why was I, a parenting blogger, invited to this event? Obviously to be part of the launch of the ToddleBox and I believe it was to share the research that toddlers in Ireland are lacking iron and Vitamin D. I’ve never used follow-on-milk myself but I know it’s widely advertised as a source of iron and Vitamin D and aimed at toddler aged one to three. Sounds a bit suss to me.
Or very clever marketing?
Either way, it doesn’t sit right with me. It would have been nice to have been told beforehand so I could have made an informed decision about attending an event more or less ran by a formula company.
Also, just for clarification, I have no issues with formula feeding. I’m sure my regular readers would be fully aware of that. My issue is the sneaky marketing tactics of formula companies and their violation of the WHO code.
p.s I’m fully aware I will probably be blacklisted with PR companies across Ireland but you know what I would rather stay true to myself and call out a snake when I see one.
Update: the organiser has got in touch and I’ve checked and yes she had in fact mentioned the company hosting the event in the original invite. But the link to formula was not made and consumers don’t know that this company is a formula brand and nor did I! I thought there’d be free yoghurt!