May 20, 2016
New Delhi: Indian Journal of Pediatrics and British Biological Pvt. Ltd found violating the Infant Milk Substitutes, Feeding Bottles and Infant Foods (Regulation of Production, Supply & Distribution) Act 1992, and Amendment Act 2003 (IMS Act).
In its February 2016 issue the Indian Journal of Pediatrics, published from New Delhi, India printed an advertisement of “LF100” an Infant Milk Substitute manufactured and marketed by British Biological Pvt. Ltd, Bangalore, India.
The IMS Act clearly prohibits all kinds of promotion for 0-2 year of baby foods and feeding bottles, including advertisement, pecuniary benefits to doctors or their associations including sponsorship, as well as commission to salesperson; and also prescribes labeling requirements.
Breastfeeding Promotion Network of India (BPNI), an authorized government organization to monitor the IMS Act analyzed the advertisement and concluded that it is a violation of several provisions of the IMS Act.
BPNI served a legal notice to infant formula manufacturer British Biologicals and Indian Journal of Pediatrics, on 28th March 2016 for violation of the IMS Act conveying both the organizations to stop publishing the respective advertisements in print/ electronic or social media.
In response to the legal notice the Indian Journal of Pediatrics blocked further circulation of their February issue which contained the advertisement and also withdrew contract with British Biologicals for publication of the advertisement.