Another year, another flash mob comprised of dozens of mothers breastfeeding in public in the streets of Fuzhou.
Each year, the event is held right around National Breastfeeding Awareness Day (May 20th) and always seems to draw quite the crowd (2015 / 2014).
We just hope they are all there for the right reasons.
Which, of course, is to promote the many benefits of breastfeeding and allow the practice to become more socially acceptable in public places in China.
Currently, China has a breastfeeding rate of just 28%, much lower than the rate of most of the rest of the developed world, according to CRI. This has been the case for quite some time now with a decades-long propaganda campaign dissuading Chinese mothers from breastfeeding by milk powder manufacturers blamed for the disparity.
In recent years, the Chinese government has sought to release mothers from the grip of big baby formula by considering a ban on infant formula advertisements and encouraging special “lactation spaces” in public places and apps to help locate them. They hope to get the breastfeeding rate up to 50% by 2020. In the US, for comparison, 79% of infants are breastfeed before 6 months; however, between 6 and 12 months, that figure drops down to 49%, according to a 2014 CDC report.
Last month, Pingxiang city in Jiangxi province introduced new special seats that allow mothers to breastfeed in private while on public transport. But we’ve seen that kind of thing before.
For Mother’s Day this year, some dudes in Harbin tried their chest at breastfeeding. We’ll probably see that again.
Still, there are some types of breastfeeding that remain frowned upon.
[Images via NetEase]