Why Mead Johnson Nutrition cannot be a leader in the industry? Introduction According to the official website of Mead Johnson Nutrition (MJN), it has nearly 100 years for manufacturing nutritional products (MJN, 2013). Nowadays, it is one of the largest enterprises of manufacturing nutritional products. The milk powder product of MJN is comprehensive. It is provided for pregnant and lactating women, baby and children. Although it has a long history and experience for providing nutritional products, it still cannot be the leader of the industry. In my opinion, one of the major reasons is conducting the unethical marketing activities.
In this essay, the ethical issue of marketing activities in MJN would be evaluated with the aid of AMA Code of Ethics and Rule Utilitarianism Principle. Deceptive promotion A cute child makes a handicraft using a heart-shaped pattern in the butterfly photo for presenting love for his mother in the class. This is a plot in the television commercial of Enfagrow – one of the Mead Johnson Nutrition products for infant (Figure1). People can watch it frequently on the day time television. This advertisement focuses on the higher level of Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA).
It shows that more DHA can make children cleverer than others who have not intake more DHA. It flaunts more DHA is beneficial for the growth of brain. According to the Code of Ethics published by the American Marketing Association (AMA), marketers have the responsibility for preventing the advertisement which is false and misleading in the area of promotions (AMA, 2003). Obviously, the marketer of MJN violates this rule and made a deceptive promotion. By using a smart and lovely children as well as the high level DHA, Enfagrow seems to be good for children to develop a smart brain.
It also claims that Enfagrow has the highest content of DHA in the industry. Almost people think more and more good things means excellent. The marketer utilizes the weakness of people to gain more profit. However, it is false and misleading public. Overage of DHA is not helpful but harmful to children. The President of Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Hong Kong pointed out human’s coagulation function will be decreased by absorbing exceed DHA and the risk of bleeding will be also increased (Sharpdaily. hk, 2013). According to Rule Utilitarianism, the marketing behavior of MJN is unethical.
There are three groups of people are affected by the MJN marketing behavior, including MJN, customer, and society. For the MJN, it is the only one which is benefited. People purchase their products and then increase their revenue. Also, MJN has the highest mark-up on their product price comparing to the others (Figure2). Thus, they can gain very high profit. For the customer, children and parents are harmed. Children intake the unsafe milk and it will destroy their health. Almost parents love their children and put all resource for taking care of their children.
They treat their children as their life. If their children suffer illness, parents would suffer a great anxiety. For the society, it is harmed. There are two aspects– heavier burden of medical care and loss of pillar of society. Even the children survive from the unsafe milk product, their body is not health ever and they are easier to suffer illness in their future live. Thus, they will increase the burden of medical care and their working ability also is diminished. In conclusion, the harms outweigh the benefits. MJN conducts the unethical marketing exchange process for their customers.
Recommendations In order to achieve the leader role in the industry, MJN need to establish a good image. First of all, a more rigorous quality check system is required for producing safe products. Then, there are two consumer-oriented marketing activities are suggested for adding value. Firstly, Professional consult is suggested for MJN. Parents do not have professional knowledge and lack of experience on provide nutrition to baby. It is because the birth rate of Hong Kong continued at a low level (Gov. hk, 2010). Thus, many parents are the first time to take care a baby.
Secondly, a platform such as providing forum in MJN website may also be a good tool for parents to share their experience to others. Conclusion Nowadays, the customers are very smart and with the help of powerful mass media, they have more marketing sense and easier to recognize the unethical marketing activities. If MJN want to be the leader in the industry, they should remove the bad feeling that is established in the current history, re-design the marketing strategy, conduct the quality checking, redeem customer’s confidence gradually, and bear in mind of the real need of customer.
Eventually, they can capture the targeted customer heart with the aid of long history of providing nutrition. Appendix [pic] Figure1 Television commercial of Enfagrow (Retrieved March 23, 2013 from https://www. youtube. com/watch? v=Fo3oGHgJZQ0) [pic] Figure2 A comparison of average price of different milk providers from 2009-2011 (Retrieved March 25, 2013 from http://ubeat. com. cuhk. edu. hk/? p=835) References American Marketing Association Code of Ethics (2003). AMA CODE OF ETHICS.
Retrieved March 24, 2013 from http://www. helleniccomserve. com/marketingcodeofethics. html Gov. hk (2010). ????. Retrieved March 25, 2013 from http://www. gov. hk/tc/about/abouthk/factsheets/docs/population. pdf Mead Johnson Nutrition (Hong Kong) Ltd. (2013). ????? – ???? ? | ?????. Retrieved March 23, 2013 from http://www. meadjohnson. com. hk/meadjohnson/history. php Sharpdaily. hk (2013). Sharp Daily ?? – 20130129 – ????????? ??? BB???????. Retrieved March 24, 2013 from http://www. sharpdaily. hk/article/news/20130129/171878