In a developing world filled with baby formulas, breast pumps, certified milk banks and informal milk banks, it is hard to know what choice is the best when it comes to providing for your child. A recent NY Times article discusses the benefits to breast milk and explores the differences between certified milk banks and informal ones. The article quotes a gay male couple that use breast milk, from a stranger they found online, to feed their infants. Although the FDA discourages this type of milk market, the couple seems to be very fond of it. Not only are the high prices and low stocks of the breast milk at certified and established milk banks that screen all their donors a turn off to many parents, but also the fact that these “safe” milk banks pasteurize their milk “because the heating process destroys some of the very substances — some of the milk’s immunoglobulin A, for example — that they are seeking in breast milk.” The article has no answer as to what the best and safest way to feed an infant is, and no one does, it seems to be a personal decision. This website, along with the NY times article, is a good place to weight the pros and cons of formula, personal breast milk, and milk banks. The Human Milk Banking Association of North America also gives lots of information about their screening and packaging processes of breast milk.
So what do you think the best way to obtain milk for your baby is if you can’t use your own breast milk?