International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes

The International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes (hereafter referred to as "The Code") was adopted in 1981 by 118 countries, including Canada, as a "minimum requirement" to protect infant health by ensuring the ethical marketing of breast-milk substitutes by the industry.




  • Commercial infant preparation
  • Foods and beverages for infants under 36 months or as a replacement for breast milk (cereals, purees, juices, herbal teas)
  • Bottles, nipples, and pacifiers



  • No advertising to the general public of products covered by the Code.
  • No free samples given to mothers.
  • No promotion of Code-covered products in healthcare facilities, including the distribution of free or low-cost supplies.
  • No company representatives of breast-milk substitute companies to advise mothers.
  • No gifts or samples given to healthcare professionals.
  • No wording or imagery idealizing commercial infant preparation feeding – including images of babies on product labels.
  • Information provided by manufacturers and distributors to healthcare professionals must be scientific and limited to facts.
  • Each package or label must clearly state the superiority of breastfeeding and include a warning about the risks and cost of artificial feeding.
  • No promotion of sweetened condensed milk or other inappropriate products as infant foods.
  • Manufacturers and distributors must adhere to the provisions of the Code, even if countries have not adopted adequate legislative measures.


Read the full text by clicking here.



Other sources of information: CCA  MSSS  OMS  MAQ  LLL France