So You Wouldn’t Sell Your Milk. Would You Give It Away?

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Earlier this week we looked at web sites that help facilitate the sale of breast milk. Here’s a story in the Beaverton Valley Times about women giving away their breast milk to families in need.

The movement, called “community milk-sharing, is where families in need of breast milk use social media forums to connect with mothers who have breast milk to spare.

Unlike other social media forums, such as, no money changes hands, except for minor reimbursement for costs. But like the other forums, the American Academy of Pediatricians and the federal Food and Drug Administration have expressed their concerns. That’s because there is no documentation about medical procedures or drugs that may affect the breast milk quality.

Community milk sharers, though, say it’s just the latest version of an ancient tradition — going back to wet nurses.

“We have developed this beautiful community of unlikely friends,” Carmona says. “It is hard to put into words how grateful and how humbled I am by the generosity of the women who are providing for our daughter. They pump voluntarily to feed our child, without payment or expectation of receiving anything in return.”

Sounds nice! The group is fundraising to create a human milk bank in Portalnd.

Community milk sharing is a Godsend to women who hoped to nurse but have found themselves unable — as happens sometimes.

One milksharing group is called Eats on Feets – a play on Meals on Wheels. It began in Phoenix when a midwife asked for help on her Facebook page. Soon, Eats on Feets were operating in all 50 states.

Check out this awesome quote from Maria Armstrong, a local doula:

“It’s the highest form of recycling,” says Armstrong, who volunteers her time to administer the site. “There’s no waste, no growing of soy, nothing that weighs on the environment, and the milk is being used to make another human being grow.”

One thing that’s interesting is that Eats on Feets is already working on adding optional safeguards where donors could have their blood tested and have results posted online.

What do you think? Have you ever done community milk sharing? Does this interest you?