National WIC Association

What the Dissolution of Relationships with Infant Formula Manufacturers Means

September 12, 2016

WIC is a federal public health nutrition program administered by the United State Department of Agriculture (USDA), Food and Nutrition Service (FNS). Congress, the USDA and State WIC Agencies establish policies that govern WIC and its operations.

The National WIC Association (NWA) is a non-profit membership association that advocates for WIC and provides education and training to WIC staff. NWA does not create WIC policy or have oversight of WIC.

This decision does not:

  • make or change policy for the WIC program.
  • change WIC food packages. Mothers who need infant formula can still receive formula through the WIC program.
  • prevent infant formula manufacturers from advertising to moms and families.

This decision does:

  • ban infant formula manufacturers from financially supporting NWA.
  • bar infant formula manufactuers from exhibiting at NWA conferences.
  • dissolve all other relationships NWA has with infant formula manufacturers.

This decision:

  • is the most recent in a series of steps taken to align the practices of NWA with the WHO International Code of Marketing of Breast-Milk Substitutes;
  • was voted on by NWA voting members in May 2015 and was reaffirmed by vote in May 2016.