Breastfeeding and mothers’ milk is presently not counted in food systems or the economy but should be. The Mothers’ Milk Tool will help.
Money is the language of policymakers. Counting human milk production in food and economic statistics will assist in better policy decision-making and investments in women’s unpaid care work. The Mothers’ Milk Tool quantifies the volume of breastmilk and value of breastfeeding at national and global levels, as well as how much is lost if country environments and policies, or healthcare, work and community settings do not enable women’s and children’s rights to breastfeeding.
The Australian National University and Alive & Thrive Southeast Asia have partnered to develop this easy to use, downloadable tool that makes more visible the economic value contributed to society by women’s unpaid care work through breastfeeding of infants and young children.
The Mothers’ Milk Tool will be of value to a variety of users, including policymakers, advocates, researchers, national accountants and statisticians, and individual mother/baby dyads. It can support tracking of progress on breastfeeding targets, by assisting food and health policymakers and public officials to include breastfeeding in food balance sheets and economic statistics. The Tool also allows individual mothers to calculate how much milk they have produced for their child and its value, depending on how many months the child is breastfed for during the first 36 months of life.
An online version of the tool with an interactive interface is under development and is expected to be released in August 2022.
The current tool is fully functioning in Windows Operating system. We are aware of and currently addressing compatibility issues with Mac IOS.