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Is it better to do the popular thing or to do the right thing?

I dithered for a fair while about whether to post about why I’m boycotting Annabel Karmel because of her recent tie up with Nestle.

Mostly because I feared the reactions from others in the blogging community who had enjoyed the day out meeting her and other celebrities at the event to mark the launch of this new product range.

I had been invited and I’d dithered over how to word a response to the PR company and eventually run out of time and avoided the issue of replying with a ‘thanks but no thanks because of x, y and z’.

And I’ve kept my tongue between my teeth whilst people in the blogging community have said how nice it was and have given Ms Karmel and her products lots of publicity because I know that they weren’t aware of the wider issues surrounding this seemingly benign offer to be involved in a fun day out.

And that’s when my conscience started to prick me, because I did know, and whilst I’ve become a little lax about my Nestle boycott recently (I hadn’t realised they had picked up a stake in San Pellegrino, for example), surely I had a responsibility to mention that there was another side to this and that there are wider implications that people should be aware of.

And I still worry that I’ll be perceived as a prig, as someone who brought up something that didn’t really need airing and perhaps offend people who I don’t want to.

But in this case there are an awful lot of women and children who are impacted by the global, multi billion pound company’s marketing that undermines breastfeeding.

And for their sake, I have to say something in the hope that you’ll read this and go and read more about this.

How about looking at information about how Nestle have breached the marketing guidelines?

Or just about why people think you should join the boycott.

Please also be aware that IBFAN isn’t against formula feeding, it is also campaigning to make formula feeding safer if mothers choose to / need to do so – this isn’t a breast vs bottle issue.

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9 comments to Is it better to do the popular thing or to do the right thing?

  • Emily O

    >The great thing about blogging is that you can say what you want. There's a risk some people will take it the wrong way but I've experienced that and it soon blows over. I think you need to write from the heart and not write what you think you should. It's what makes everyone's blogs different and I think healthy debate is very positive. Carry on doing what you're doing. You might find this article interesting too: http://econsultancy.com/blog/5625-nestle-fails-to-tame-the-social-media-mob

  • Sarah

    >"Mostly because I feared the reactions from others in the blogging community"

    I can see why that would be a concern, nobody likes the idea that they might be making other people possibly feeling feel bad about something they chose to take part in.

    On the other hand if all mummy blogs get muzzled because of protracted pussyfooting nobody will say anything about anything and we'll all die of boredom.

    FWIW I didn't read your posts as priggish or trying to out "moral high ground" anybody else. I had no idea they were still up to their old tricks and I don't doubt many others will be grateful for the heads up.

    It was such a high profile issue that I'm surprised the huge amount of boycotting made not one whit of difference in terms of their MO. If consumer sanctions didn't work in that case, what hope in less well known or less emotive situations.

  • Brit in Bosnia / Fraught Mummy

    >I added a link to your last post about Annabel Karmel to give Clare Curran who is going to interview Annabel Karmel some ideas for questions. You may want to add more of your own ideas…

    http://britishmummybloggers.ning.com/forum/topics/questions-for-annabel-karmel

    PS – blogging is great. Say what you think. It can't be a community where no one ever says something that is different to what others say. And in this case, I wasn't aware about the connections between Ms. Karmel and Nestle and I thought that Nestle had stopped such practices years ago, so it was great to have it bought to my attention. x

  • Jen

    >Good on you, I do understand what you mean by worrying about reactions but you are right to mention this. It is something you feel strongly about and it is your blog. I wouldn't have known the bigger issues only for you:) Jen.

  • Liz (LivingwithKids)

    >As with all blog posts it's entirely up to you what you choose to write about, that's the beauty of blogging.

    As far as the Annabel Karmel/Nestle connection goes, though, I think it would be worth getting a response from her to put on your blog (if you can). She is on twitter as I'm sure you know or alternatively you could try contacting her PR at Ebury Press.

  • deer baby

    >I'm glad you spoke out – I didn't know she was connected to them. It makes a refreshing change to see someone making a stand with an informed opinion – plus it's your blog!

    Personally I banned AK years ago because her food was always so fiddly – who has the time to make all those little sandwiches in the shape of sail boats. She always made me felt like I'd failed as a mother.

  • Alice

    >Good for you – even though other bloggers may not agree with what you're saying, I think you will always garner more respect by being true to what you believe in. I will definitely respect you for this, anyway 🙂

  • Very Bored in Catalunya

    >Say what you believe in, it's your blog and your voice. Others should respect your opinion.

    I've boycotted Kitkats from our fishing packed lunches (at much inconvience to myself as I now have to go to a further supermarket to get an alternative) as they contain Palm Oil and I have a thing about orang-utans.

    http://jeffreyhill.typepad.com/english/2010/03/greenpeace-give-the-orangutan-a-break-campaign.html

  • […] Hannah at Muddling Along Mummy blogs about why she boycotts Nestle in Is it better to do the popular thing or to do the right thing? […]

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