The Baby Formula Scam

The 2 Biggest Marketing Scams Ever

This is a lesson. A lesson to not be gullible & naive. It's a lesson to take everything you read with a pinch of salt. 


Nestle's Baby Formula Scam

Nestle came into existence in 1867 when Nestle's founder Henry Nestle came up with an alternative to breast milk - i.e baby formula. 

Formula was meant for babies who for whatever reason, couldn't breastfeed. Formula, however, was vastly inferior to actual human breast milk. Breast Milk is nutritious, formula isn't - something Nestle KNEW already. 


But, come on... babies who can't breastfeed? What kind of market is that? 

In the 1970s, Nestle wanted to expand. 

To do so, they had to knock down one or rather... two opponents. Thus, they launched an aggressive, global marketing campaign. 

From advertisements that claimed that formula was the "very best for your baby" to paying medical professionals to recommend their products, Nestle knew how to dupe the general public. 

Yet, none of this comes close to what Nestle did in the developing countries of Africa & Asia. 

Nestle hired a bunch of saleswomen, dressed them up as nurses, and had them give out medical advice & free samples of their baby formula to mothers. 

These free samples lasted JUST long enough for those very mothers to stop naturally lactating. 

The result? They were now dependent on Nestle's baby formula.

Babies were denied nutrition & health for Nestle's bottom line. 

Keeping in mind that these countries already suffered from poverty and the lack of medical infrastructure, Nestle was downright cruel.  

Not only could the people of these countries not afford the myriad of illnesses that came with baby formula, but they also couldn't afford the product itself. 

Eventually, the world caught up to Nestle's evil plans and Nestle had to do some massive damage control thanks to all the bad PR - They even came up with this really weird "pro-breastfeeding" song. 

Of course, this isn't the ONLY scammy thing Nestle did. 

However, Nestle and bottled water is a story for another newsletter. 

Moving on to....

The Tobacco-Is-Healthy Scam

From the likes of Marlboro to Camel, these folks know how to market. 

These companies changed the game of advertising. 

Tobacco companies instilled themselves in every relevant conversation. Way way back, women smoking was unconsidered uncultured. They managed to change the narrative from "uncultured" to "sophisticated". 

They took the opportunity of women's suffrage and women's rights to sell themselves. By taking the feminist angle, they hid their agenda within the folds of the women's rights movement.  

It was very "grab a cigarette and tell your husband or father or brother or whoever to stick it". 

We kid you not but Lucky Strike, a cigarette company, even put out advertisements that alluded that you can remain slender by reaching for cigarettes instead of food. 

The slogan read "Reach For A Lucky Instead Of A Sweet" 

Nothing like using body image issues to sell your product. 

However, in the late 50s, the public began to realise that smoking kills. This was a PR disaster for tobacco brands. 

So, what did they do? 

Well, they hired doctors & dentists to ease people's worries over smoking. After all, when it comes to health, people listen to doctors. 

Slogans like "More Doctors Smoke Camels Than Any Other Cigarettes" & "Just What The Doctor Ordered" were everywhere. 

The goal was to sow a seed of doubt and let addiction do its job. 

And, yes, it worked. 

Not only did they use medical professionals to sell their products, but they also overwhelmed the public with scientific data. 

They funded false studies that "investigated" claims against smoking & then "proved" that those claims were baseless. They hired doctors to write false reports. They discredited doctors & medical professionals who were anti-smoking. They made smoking cool when it wasn't. It was propaganda after propaganda. 



I mean, amongst all this, would YOU really know what to believe? 

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