Ashley Graham made history this week as the first ever parent to combo feed her babies with breastmilk and formula on billboards across the country. She is using her star-power to represent and support the silent majority— the 70% of formula-feeding parents who also combination feed their babies. Like many moms, breastfeeding wasn’t a total success for Ashley Graham.
Graham— supermodel, entrepreneur, and mom of three, is joining forces with our team at Bobbie to evolve the conversation around how we choose to feed our babies. Bobbie is the only mom-founded and led infant formula company in the U.S.
How did we get here?
- 83% of parents rely on formula during their baby’s first year.
- 70% of formula-feeding parents are combo feeding, meaning they use some combination of breastmilk and formula.
- 64% of parents feel judged for feeding their baby formula and nearly half (46%) have lied about their feeding choices.
- The cultural stigma and shame surrounding formula is NOT acceptable and must evolve.
Against the backdrop of the U.S. formula shortage, with all eyes on the formula industry like never before, compounded with added shame on “moms who should just breastfeed,” the time to create cultural change that supports all parents and all feeding journeys is now. Throughout the month of September, Bobbie and Graham are seizing the moment to normalize combo feeding— moving away from the “breast is best” versus “fed is best” rhetoric that incites divisiveness, shame and comparison. Bobbie’s campaign seeks to move toward the not-so-radical idea that best is BS. Ultimately, one size does not feed all.
“Feeding your babies is as personal as it gets. After solely breastfeeding my first son for 13 months, I thought I was going to need a different plan for my twins,” said Graham. “When the time came I knew combo-feeding would be best for us. That worked really well for 6 months and now I’m exclusively formula feeding and it’s fantastic. For many parents, there’s often a series of decisions that play out over the course of your feeding experience— and no matter where you are on that journey, there is no wrong choice. ”
Continuing Bobbie’s ethos of mission over sales, the goal of our campaign is purely to incite cultural change and evolve the conversation around how we feed our babies. In order to make combo feeding something we talk about and embrace without justification, we must replace shame with confidence and support. In order to do this, we must start the conversation— be it in person, virtually, with your pediatrician, in your group texts, on a billboard, in a magazine on your coffee table. Here’s how Bobbie and Ashley Graham are showing up throughout September to do just that:
- We’ll Text You – Parents in the Bobbie Fam and beyond will have the opportunity to sign up for exclusive texts from Ashley Graham herself, to follow along on her feeding journey, receive educational content on combo feeding and be a part of a supportive community of parents.
- We’ll Show Up – Ashley Graham will make history as the first parent to combo feed her babies on billboards across the country. See it for yourself in LA (7673 Melrose Avenue) and NYC (234 Canal Street).
- We’ll Support You – Bobbie-hosted combo feeding educational events for parents who are combo feeding or combo-curious. Join Bobbie and our friends for a NAPS Combo Feeding Event on 9/20. Join us and our friends for a Hatch Combo Feeding Event on 9/26.
“As a new mom, you enter this journey assuming you’ll breastfeed, and it will be this beautiful experience. But for the majority of us, that’s not the reality. It certainly wasn’t for me,” said Laura Modi, CEO and Co-Founder of Bobbie, and mom of three. “More than anything, it was the immense shame I felt turning to formula that fueled me to create an Organic, high quality alternative. I envisioned a world where formula could instill a sense of confidence, rather than comparison, and that’s what we’ve been building ever since. No matter what your feeding journey looks like, as a parent, you deserve to feel good about it. Full stop.”