Mom Asks the Makers of Similac for a Meeting

Mamavation is petitioning the makers of Similac to remove genetically modified ingredients (GMOs) from their infant formula.And we’ve been quite successful online garnering support.

Last week I got in touch with Fleishman Hillard, the public relations firm that handles Similac.They know me already. But what has happened is odd. After reaching out and getting an initial “Oh HEY LEAH! We’ll get back to you real soon!”…I’ve not heard back.

Fleishman Hillard is a firm I’ve worked with before. Friends of mine have worked there. I don’t jive with ALL their clients, but they do have some I’ve worked with in the past. My take is they are creative and fun to work with.

My guess is they created the Strong Moms Empower campaign, where friends of mine like Danielle Smith were reaching out to digital moms. I find it interesting that Similac is trying to reach out to us as a group, and yet they have ignored my petition. I mean, I’m a mom. I’m an influencer. They know who I am. I’ve known Similac’s public relations team for years. Similac is a brand that has wanted to work with ME for years. Trust me, I’m on their radar.

I have not heard a response from Similac regarding my petition. So I’m stepping it up a notch and emailing the CEO of Abbott Laboratories, the makers of Similac Infant Formula. This was the email that I sent earlier today.

Dear Mr. White,

I hope this finds you well.

I’m reaching out to you today about an issue of great concern to me:  genetically modified ingredients (GMOs) in infant formula.

I am a mother of three. I had to supplement my third son due to low body weight and then completely ween him off my breastmilk later because of his severe food allergies. He was even allergic to my breastmilk.  When I was faced with choosing a formula for him, I was very alarmed by the ingredients in your formula and was left feeling helpless about what I could feed him.

I am just one mom, but I represent thousands of parents who just want to be able to give their kids healthy and safe food. You may have noticed the petition I started last month on asking you to be a leader and remove GMO ingredients from your formulas. Over 4,000 people have joined with me so far in this call. Here is the petition, I also hosted a twitter party where over 528 bloggers stood with me asking you to do this, creating over 23 million impressions and reaching over 11 million accounts. And then I hosted a Facebook party where the images I created were shared over 3,000 times. I’m also planning additional social media events to get the word out.

While the long-term health impacts of GMOs are still being debated, the negative impacts of our increased exposure to agrochemicals used in GMO farming are not. And when it comes to babies, who are the most vulnerable of us all, if there is even a possibility GMOs are harmful, we must exercise an abundance of caution.  Because when it comes to babies, is it REALLY worth the risk?

The research that has been done on laboratory animals, livestock, and humans, demonstrate that great caution should be exercised when developing and consuming GMOs. Many pediatricians have recommended non-GMO diets for infants and pregnant women, and all of Europe has adopted the precautionary principle when it comes to GMOs. (Unlike the US, where the FDA has not required the long-term studies on the health impacts of GMOs to prove their safety, as it is required for other drugs and chemicals.)

Moms know your brand, and increasingly, moms are demanding the right to know what’s in the food they buy and feed their families. As the number one seller of infant formula in the US, I believe you have the opportunity to be a leader and the first infant formula maker to state publicly that you will remove GMO ingredients. I can promise you that if you do, you will see the benefits right away via sales and accolades from moms like me.

I would love the opportunity to discuss this issue more with you. I request your response by June 20, 2013.

Thank you so much for listening,

Leah Segedie

I’m not giving up on this. I’m a pain in the ass when it comes to things I believe in and feel passionately about. And protecting babies from GMOs is one of those passions.

So for those of you who are listening know this. I’m an influencer who cares passionately about the food supply. This is not an area where GMOs should be thriving. No mother would put their child in harms way or risk their health. AND when most moms hear about the dangers of GM foods they become cautious. You know as I know that it’s only a matter of time before this message reaches all moms online. This isn’t something you can ignore.

*knock knock*

I’m knocking at your door. Let me in so we can talk about making this a win-win for everyone.

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