Moms in the U.S. and Europe are cashing in on their excess breast milk, hawking it online for up to $2.50 an ounce. But is it safe for the babies who drink it?
Websites such as Only The Breast open the floodgates for women to sell or buy milk. Donors list their milk according to the age of the baby and if they are able to provide fresh milk on demand. The cost ranges from $1 to $2.50 per ounce.
A lot of moms are flocking toward this opportunity, but reports from ABC Nightline convey not all mothers agree, such as Kamilla Vainshtock:
Not from a perfect stranger — maybe if I knew the person, I might be willing to do it. But doing it over the Internet from a perfect stranger, just seems a little bit strange to me. And yet you're the perfect stranger. Absolutely and of course I have all good intentions so I'm definitely doing it the proper way. But you never know.
Experts agree that buying breast milk online is not the wisest choice. While breast milk is known to boost a child's immunity, someone else's milk may contain its mother's diseases, her medications, or the illegal drug(s) to which she is addicted. But buying breast milk online, often on Craigslist or in Facebook forums, can be tempting to struggling new moms.
The Professional Association of Pediatrics warns mothers unable to breastfeed not to resort to the Internet.
Wolfram Hartmann, president of the American Academy of Pediatrics made a statement stressing caution.
Donors can be taking medicines or drugs, have infectious illnesses like AIDS or Hepatitis.