Lodging complaints of alleged breaches of the MAIF Agreement

The following information is intended to assist complainants when lodging complaints of alleged breaches of the MAIF Agreement.

Page last updated: February 2019

The MAIF Agreement

The MAIF Agreement is a voluntary, self-regulatory, code of conduct between the manufacturers and importers of infant formula in Australia. It is Australia’s response to the World Health Organization’s International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes 1981 (WHO Code). The MAIF Agreement applies to those Australian manufacturers and importers of infant formula who are signatories to the MAIF Agreement.

The MAIF Agreement aims to contribute to the provision of safe and adequate nutrition for infants, by protecting and promoting of breastfeeding and by ensuring the proper use of breast milk substitutes, when they are necessary, on the basis of adequate information through appropriate marketing and distribution.

The marketing activities of retailers including pharmacies and supermarkets are outside the scope of the MAIF Agreement. Toddler milk products for toddlers over 12 months of age, and baby food, feeding bottles, teats and dummies are also outside the scope of the MAIF Agreement.

Who can lodge a complaint ?

Individuals, members of industry, community and consumer groups are able to lodge complaints of alleged breaches of the MAIF Agreement to the Department of Health.

What you should do before lodging a complaint ?

Whenever possible, complainants should contact the relevant company or organisation responsible, prior to lodging a complaint to the Department, as a satisfactory explanation or solution may be immediately available.

Lodging a complaint

When lodging a complaint, the Department requires the complainant to complete an electronic version of the Complaint Form for each complaint. All fields of the Complaint Form should be completed before a complaint can be considered.

The Complaints Handling Process

The complaints are received by the MAIF Complaints Committee (the Committee) Secretariat which is based within the Department of Health. Complaints are registered by the secretariat and provided to the Committee for further consideration. A flowchart has been developed that demonstrates the complaints handling process.

Where to send complaints

By email to: maif@health.gov.au

Complaints can also be sent by post to:
MAIF Complaints Committee Secretariat
Food & Nutrition Policy Section
Department of Health
MDP 707 GPO Box 9848
Canberra ACT 2601

For inquiries or assistance, phone: (02) 6289 7358