UK
12/11/2013 07:18 GMT | Updated 23/01/2014 18:58 GMT

Breastfeed Bribery? New Mothers To Be Given £200 Vouchers To Ditch The Bottle

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People have reacted furiously to the news mothers are to be paid £200 to breastfeed their babies.

Vouchers for Matalan, John Lewis or Mothercare - as well as major supermarkets - will be dished out to new mothers if they feed their babies with breast milk under a new scheme.

It is hoped the campaign will make babies healthier, as Britain has one of the lowest rates of breastfeeding in the world.

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Mothers will be given shopping vouchers worth up to £120 if their babies receive breast milk until they are six week old, and a further £80 if their babies continue to be breastfed until they are six months.

If the "feasibility" project is successful, the authors will conduct a national research project into the scheme.

The senior research fellow at the University of Sheffield said breastfeeding had been "undervalued" by society and the voucher scheme was a way of recognising that.

Dr Clare Relton said breastfeeding is "stigmatised" in parts of the UK and insisted the scheme offers vouchers to mothers who breastfeed as a way of "acknowledging both the value of breastfeeding to babies, mothers and society, and the effort involved in breastfeeding."

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But many reacted angrily to the campaign, taking to Twitter to voice their concerns: