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Donor milk
Diesmal schauen wir uns den Spendermilchbuggy an. Spendermilch ist Milch von anderen Müttern. Ein Phänomen, das neu zu sein scheint, aber die Verabreichung von Spendermilch reicht lange zurück. Früher war es für Mütter, die Probleme mit der Muttermilchproduktion hatten, das Normalste auf der Welt, ihre Babys von anderen Frauen füttern zu lassen. Seit dem Aufkommen der Flaschenfütterung ist die Nachfrage nach Spendermilch vollständig zurückgegangen. Aufgrund der Popularität der Flaschenernährung und der HIV-Epidemie wurden in den 1980er Jahren alle Muttermilchbanken weltweit geschlossen.

Importance of breast milk
Mothers and babies form an inseparable biological and social bond. Breast milk contains tailor-made substances that promote the development of your little one. Babies who drink breast milk are therefore less prone to infections and experience healthier mental development. The World Health Organization and UNICEF recommend giving breast milk for at least six months for the best development of the little you. It is also said that breastfeeding equals the quality of a Louis Vuitton bag, while bottle feeding is an Eastpack. A designer handbag is an investment, but you will never regret it. As more information became available about the importance of human milk for the health, growth and immune system of babies, donor milk has reached a new peak. Since 2011, the Dutch Breast Milk Bank has reopened for the new mothers for whom breastfeeding is not a matter of course.

Consideration of donor milk
Breastfeeding is the most natural way to feed your baby. Due to various complications, you as a mother may not be able to administer the nutrition through your breast. As a mother you can suffer from those nasty cracked nipples or experience fatigue after all the sleepless nights. You may also experience problems with milk production, psychological obstacles from the past or the consequences of breast cancer. If mothers with these problems want to feed their newborns with Louis Vuitton quality, the World Health Organization recommends donor milk over formula.

“VUmc pediatrician Van Goudoever calls donor milk the liquid gold”

Advantages of donor milk
The Amsterdam UMC is currently the only breast milk bank in the Netherlands. The breast milk donors first undergo a (short) telephone intake interview with someone from the breast milk bank about the use of medicines / drugs / alcohol / diet, etc. If there are no objections, donors will be referred to Sanquin blood supply for a donor check by a donor doctor and a blood test. Long-term donors have a blood test every three months to guarantee the star quality of the donor milk. The donor milk is first checked for bacteria, then pasteurized and finally checked one more time. VUmc pediatrician Van Goudoever also refers to donor milk as liquid gold. Donor milk may sound like music to your ears, but do know that donor milk does not come without risks.

Disadvantages donor milk
Since the advent of social media, sharing breastmilk has become a lot easier. In the Netherlands there are pages: Breastfeeding Donor Milk and Breast Milk Network. On these pages, mothers offer their remaining breast milk. This means that the hospital is no longer an intermediary and the star quality of the donor milk is not guaranteed. Nevertheless, the relevant pages often perform physical screenings in combination with blood tests at the request of the requesting mother. Donating breastmilk is risky as bacteria, viruses and diseases can inadvertently be passed on to your little smurf. If pumping is not done hygienically or if breast milk is not stored correctly, your baby can become very sick. Van Goudoever understands very well the consideration of the new mothers among us, but is critical of the fact that breast milk is shared in this way. He thinks the risk is too high and does not recommend unprocessed breast milk. Because why agree with an Eastpack?

Donor milk costs
The liquid gold from the breast milk bank comes with a hefty price tag. As if the diapers aren't expensive enough already. After the medical screening of the donors and the processing of the breast milk, donor milk through the donor bank costs € 200 per liter. How much breast milk your baby needs per day depends on the weight and age of your baby. For every kilogram of body weight, your baby needs between 100 and 150 milliliters of breast milk per day. As your baby grows rapidly, he or she will need less breast milk per kilogram of body weight.

How much food does your little one need?
The following numbers may be a little less sexy, but no less important. If you are interested in donor milk, the brain teaser below gives you an indication of the amount of nutrition you need per day in the first six months.

OK, ready? Here we go:

Month 1: 150 ml x weight in kg / number of feedings
Month 2: 140 ml x weight in kg / number of feedings
Month 3: 130 ml x weight in kg / number of feedings
Month 4: 120 ml x weight in kg / number of feedings
Month 5: 110 ml x weight in kg / number of feedings
Month 6: 100 ml x weight in kg / number of feedings

Practice tells us that the actual amount may differ. In reality, it may of course be that your baby has a snack attack or appears to have less appetite. The calculations provide an insight into the costs of donor milk for the first six months of life. You can of course compare it with a bottle feeding schedule, but with a different content.

Breast milk in surplus? You can donate.
Breast milk banks say there is a shortage of donors. The banks regularly call on mothers to register as donors. If you are interested in donating your breast milk to breast milk banks, you will be screened for various infections that you could pass on through your milk. The milk bank therefore wants to know whether you are healthy and whether you use medication on a regular basis. Your coffee and alcohol consumption is also examined. We understand that the strict conditions can put you off, but only then is it possible to give the best quality donor milk to babies who need it badly. Because every baby deserves the quality of a designer handbag! 

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