HC Deb 21 January 2003 vol 398 c277W
Dr. Ian Gibson

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what proportion of mothers on income support are projected to(a) breastfeed and (b) bottlefeed in each of the next five years. [91075]

Jacqui Smith

We do not collect information by this specific category of mother. The five-yearly national infant feeding survey provides historic data on the incidence of breastfeeding among women from social class V and those mothers without a partner. The latest survey shows a significant increase in the incidence of breastfeeding in mothers from social class V in England and Wales from 50 per cent, in 1995 to 59 per cent. in 2000.

The Department has set a national health service priorities and planning framework target to increase the initiation of breastfeeding by two percentage points per year over the next three years, particularly focussing on disadvantaged groups.