I’ve become somewhat of a Target junkie as of late. It’s near my work, and the store carries such cute (and very affordable!) baby clothes.
However, I’ve become highly annoyed at Target’s practice of printing out coupons with your receipt. Why??
Because I keep getting coupons for baby formula!
Yeah, I know, I buy puffs- they’re like baby crack, and my daughter loves them, especially when she uses them to lure the dogs over to her exersaucer. And yeah, I know I buy baby clothes there. But I don’t buy bottles, or nipples, or diapers, or wipes, or anything else that would suggest that I need baby formula.
Ugh! It drives me crazy! I’ve never requested coupons, so this practice definitely constitutes unsolicited advertising.
Further, according to the WHO’s International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes:
5.3 In conformity with paragraphs 1 and 2 of this Article, there should be no point-of-sale advertising, giving of samples, or any other promotion device to induce sales directly to the consumer at the retail level, such as special displays, discount coupons, premiums, special sales, loss-leaders and tie-in sales, for products within the scope of this Code. This provision should not restrict the establishment of pricing policies and practices intended to provide products at lower prices on a long-term basis.
Target is clearly in violation here. And yes, I know all the major retailers do this, but it still irks me. You know why they do it? BECAUSE IT WORKS- the same way that providing formula to newborns in hospitals works, and giving new moms (even the ones attempting to breastfeed) sample cans of formula works .
So what to do with the coupons? Sorry- I don’t give them away. I don't want them to be used, because I don't want to reinforce formula companies' practices (i.e., we print coupons, people use them, so let's continue advertising!) I think the only really acceptable choice is to trash them, but that’s just my opinion. I know I'm only one person, and will not make a difference on my own, but, morally, I feel like I have to stand my ground here.