Big Pharma + Mother's Milk
Prolacta and its executives have been accused of anti-competitive business practices, sexual harassment, racism, and violation of workplace safety standards. Here’s what we know.
According to Bloomberg Law, “the suit accuses Prolacta of fraudulently obtaining bogus patents. The patent at issue was Prolacta’s US Patent No. 8,628,921. As summarized in the court decision, the claimed methods were ‘intended to standardize nutritional content in donated human mammary fluid and to ensure that the donor of a given sample is a match to a previously-identified donor. If Prolacta is indeed fraudulently obtaining bogus patents from a small milk bank like Ni-Q, it is very troubling for other milk banks and Public Benefit companies currently providing mother’s milk. Prolacta also sued Ni-Q in May of 2017 in a seemingly frivolous attempt to distract from their concerning conduct.
Prolacta has sued Medolac, a Public Benefit corporation, harassing them in court for 5 years which many analysts have called frivolous and predatory. We are a bit concerned about the fact that some of the board members have controversial backgrounds. For example, their Chairman Mr. John Baccich Jr. was an executive at Baxter International in charge of making blood clotting products. During his tenure, 6,000-10,000 hemophiliacs became infected with HIV as a direct result of Baxter’s products in the 1970s and 1980s.
Prolacta Accused of Fraudulently Obtaining Bogus Patents.
Ernie Strapazon, another board member, led a division at Nestle responsible for infant formula. Nestle’s baby formula division is infamous in developing world countries because of long standing marketing efforts that many have claimed were geared towards getting mothers to be hooked on baby formula and to use it instead of mother’s milk to feed their children. This led to many deaths and health complications for the impacted children. While Mr. Strapazon may not have been involved with the specific harmful marketing campaigns, the fact that Prolacta has brought in someone from the corporate “infant formula” business seems a bit troubling and merits further examination.
Prolacta may be in violation of World Health Organization code.
Prolacta may be in violation of World Health Organization code, specifically the International Code of Marketing Breast Milk Substitutes. Information on the code can be found here https://www.ibfan.org. If you have information about specific violations, you can report them here.