A mum has criticised Tesco after staff reportedly refused to give her a free parking voucher because she bought formula baby milk. Laura Leeks’s five-month-old son cannot tolerate the high fat content of breast milk after undergoing life-saving heart surgery. But Mrs Leeks claims she was refused a free parking voucher because Tesco – under EU regulations – cannot be seen to promote a substitute ahead of breast-milk.
The young mum said she believed the store was “shaming women” who used formula milk. In a message on Tesco’s Facebook page, Mrs Leeks, 34, wrote: “I do not need to be guilt-tripped”. She explained that staff had told her they would not issue parking vouchers if somebody had purchased tobacco either.
Mrs Leeks wrote: “I am delighted that you as a company support breast feeding however I cannot accept that your policies lead to your staff shaming women who for whatever reason are using baby formula. I also cannot accept the comparison of formula feeding with the harmful effects of smoking”.
A spokesman for Tesco said “due to UK law we cannot promote baby formula in any way”.