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LIQUID GOLD: The Business of Breastmilk **EDIT link added
February 14, 2013 at 6:38 PM

One of our local TV channels is airing a story tonight about the "dangers" of selling and sharing breastmilk. I have been seeing the promos for it constantly since yesterday. They showed a little intro to it this morning. I just KNOW that it is going to infuriate me. I will update once it airs tonight at 11 Pacific.
If anyone lives in the Sacramento area and haven't seen the promos, it will be on KCRA 3 at 11.

EDIT Here is the link for the story.


  • Amberleigh81
    February 14, 2013 at 6:41 PM
    Post a link, if possible... wait, on second thought, I probably don't want to see...
  • aehanrahan
    February 14, 2013 at 6:47 PM
    I will when it is available. I'm not looking forward to it, but am curious what misinformation they're going to be spreading.

    Quoting Amberleigh81:

    Post a link, if possible... wait, on second thought, I probably don't want to see...
  • mamabens
    February 14, 2013 at 6:55 PM

    oh boy....I can only imagine!

  • aehanrahan
    February 14, 2013 at 7:09 PM
    I know! I'm betting that they're going to make a case that formula would be better than donated milk.

    Quoting mamabens:

    oh boy....I can only imagine!

  • ceckyl
    by ceckyl
    February 14, 2013 at 7:16 PM
  • Starshine-bela
    February 14, 2013 at 7:17 PM
    Ridiculous-ness. So glad I don't have cable
  • aehanrahan
    February 15, 2013 at 2:16 AM
    Apparently, donated milk is full of bacteria and dangerous for babies.
  • aehanrahan
    February 15, 2013 at 3:08 AM

    BUMP!  I added the link.

  • aehanrahan
    February 15, 2013 at 3:09 AM

    The link has been added.

    Quoting Amberleigh81:

    Post a link, if possible... wait, on second thought, I probably don't want to see...

  • aehanrahan
    February 15, 2013 at 3:47 AM
    Here is the text of the story.
    Pumping for profit: Mothers sell breast milk online

    Updated Feb 14, 2013 10:04 PM


    From collectibles to clothing, there are countless things you can buy on the Internet.

    And now, buyers have another option: Human breast milk.

    The idea is simple. Mothers post ads on sites such as Craigslist and Only The Breast to sell their surplus breast milk to mothers who cannot produce the milk.

    At $1 or $2 an ounce, the milk is roughly half the price that officials charge at registered milk banks.

    Other sites, such as Eats on Feets and Milkshare, are platforms for connecting strangers who are donating milk for those who need it.

    “There are a lot of moms who can’t produce, so this is their only way to feed kids what God gives you,” said Nina Withers, the administrator for Eats on Feets, who said it is a vital option for many families.

    However, experts warn that getting “liquid gold” online comes with big health risks.

    “There are so many unknowns with casual sharing (of milk). It’s very dangerous,” said microbiologist Kathleen Slater, with the Santa Clara Public Health Department. “It could be a source of providing an infection to a nursing infant.”

    Breast milk is a bodily fluid, like blood, and it can transmit diseases such as HIV, syphilis and hepatitis, in addition to remnants of alcohol and drugs, as well as bacteria.

    The Food and Drug Administration does not regulate breast milk because it’s considered a kind of food.

    To test whether breast milk purchased online is dangerous, KCRA 3 purchased two samples of milk from Craigslist and shipped it overnight to a lab.

    Lab results revealed that both samples contained micrococcus species and staphylococcus species, strains of bacteria that –in the right amount and kind –could make an infant sick, especially one with a weak immune system.

    “There’s nobody watching what casual sharers are doing, so if a child gets ill -- there’s no reporting mechanism,” said Pauline Sakamoto, the executive director of Mothers’ Milk Bank.

    She said the nonprofit bank screens donors, requires blood tests and pasteurizes the donated milk before sending it to needy infants.

    Sakamoto said 3 percent of the moms who go through screening are unaware they carry a virus, and 12 percent of donated milk gets disposed because it isn't safe to feed babies, due to bacteria.

    “We don’t want to have moms out of the goodness of their hearts give us their milk and find out the milk made someone sick,” Sakamoto said.

    Still, those sharing or selling milk online argue it’s a wholesome trade that helps mothers who can’t produce milk or afford the prices of milk banks.

    They believe it’s up to the buyer to research the milk provider.

    “You should know your source, their diet and everything about the other mom before you take the milk,” Withers said.

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