Blessed the Wet Nurse

My project is about a world where breast milk is a commodity. Companies like Milk Connection provide breast milk to mothers/clients via bottle or wet-nurse. Milk Connection is not a one time donation collection facility. It is a company that fosters budding wet nurses into their full potential. By providing training, pro-lactation meals, on call doctors, vitamins, testing, and legal protection, wet nurses are able to strive and build credibility in the early stages of their careers. After 8 years the wet nurse is ready to take her oath of commitment to the cause. She is given a pin to symbolize the beginning of her commitment and after ten years of following that oath, she is given the full badge along with the elevated status of a Senior Wet Nurse. Senior Wet Nurses receive special retirement privileges, such as top treatment and living arrangements, that few end up using. Instead, they end up staying with their client families until the children enter high school or go off to college– after which they join a new client family. I will be focusing on the career path of wet nurses and what this elevated status looks like.

The Form:

I believe the form will be a poster/digital collection of snap shots from this world. They would include  a job add for an entry level wet nurse, the design of the pin and badge, persona of a senior wet nurse, persona of an entry wet nurse, the oath of commitment, about the Milk Connection page, and a bio of a lower quality company.

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Career Path:


  • Level one training: if you haven’t been pregnant only—to help women make milk (pumping, vitamins)
  • Level two training: how to maintain appropriate lifestyle, interact, pump, etc

Job Levels:

  • Entry:
    • Pump breast milk and milk is given to costumer or sold in stores
    • No contact with costumer
    • Milk is tested
    • All meals are eaten at facility
    • Heavily monitored
    • Clients can watch pumping via live feed (only higher quality companies provide this)
    • Get promoted after 3 years and good performance (high quality breast milk, personable, healthy living)
  • Junior:
    • Half pumps
    • Clients can watch pumping via live feed (only higher quality companies provide this)
    • Half visits clients
    • Clients are once in a while users
    • Get promoted after 5 years and good performance
  • Associate:
    • Commutes to client’s home
    • Live in for short periods of time
    • Pumps on occasion
    • Take oath—long term commitment for as long as you can physically do it
    • Promoted after following oath and 10 years
      • Receives pin
  •  Senior:
    • Live in wet nurse
    • Close relationship with family
    • Travels with family
    • One contract could expand years
    • Live in caregiver
    • Pumps on occasion
    • Revered for long term commitment
      • Special bonuses
        • Full badge that is worn all the time
        • Good retirement possibilities
          • Many don’t use


  • Salary
  • Reimbursement for travel, health, specialized needs
  • Facility provides meals, vitamins, doctors, breast feeding products
  • Health insurance, etc
  • Protection from legal ramifications unless wet nurse actively does something that endangers child (ex: drinking and then breast feeding)
  • Requirements:
    • Follow meal plan
    • Take vitamins
    • Maintain healthy lifestyle
    • No drugs, alcohol, etc
    • Once a month visits to on site doctor
    • Preferred to have been pregnant:
    • No criminal history
    • Health/psych history approved
    • Pass current health exam
    • Non compete
    • Degrees in either Food Sciences, Biology, Biochemistry, Anatomy, Psychology, or Nutrition
  • Milk Connection:
    • Higher end because of the amount of resources they provide for wet nurses and the amount of monitoring of lower level
    • Provides live feeds of wet nurse breast feeding only entry and junior level
    • Branding of what is sold in stores is not based on attributes of wet nurses

Three Directions

1. Wet Nurse

– Create a job ad for a wet nurse on a well known site

– Fully flesh out benefits, responsibilities, insurance issues

– Express room for advancement

– Create a company that specialized in breast milk

– Certifications and education you need to become one

2. Breast Milk Related Products

– specialized brands, stores, products to aid wet nurse career

– Special food items, restaurants, drinks for wet nurses/breast feeding

– ginger, special water, lactation cookies, oatmeal, garlic, carrots, fennel, nuts, green papaya, seltzer, herbal tea, sesame seeds, almond milk, fruit juice, veggie juice,

3. Milk on the shelf

– Branding opportunities based on skill, ethnicity, health

– Few women breast feed themselves

Links I have been looking at:

Breastfeeding Today

Current issues with promoting breastfeeding:

– not enough paid maternity leave

– social stigma/harassment

– possibility of arrest

– constant need therefore very tiring for mother

– baby should be breastfeed until 6 months old but that doesn’t usually happen because its difficult to balance work and the baby’s need

So what does this mean for the future:

– rise in wet nurses (increased practice now and historical practice)

-rise in buying milk

– rise in regulation (negative towards breast feeding)

What I could do:

– create a future where wet nurses are more acceptable and map out their career

– create a future where wet nurses and buying milk is common place and focus on what supports those systems (food, products, etc)

– create a future where buying milk is typical and done in store

Final Assignment

A future wheel:

IMG_3602 copy

Some links that I have been using as resources:–breast-milk-new-wonder-cure.html–mum/supply

Final Project

So I found this article in the NYT about how Breast Milk is now a commodity and I think it would be particularity intriguing to use it as a base for my final project.

Here is the link:

I think I would want to examine a future where breast milk becomes a more powerful commodity.

Some ideas I would want to explore in relation to the project:

-Women could get longer maternity leave if they agree to sell some of their breast milk

-Branding of breast milk from different ethnicities

– Selling breast milk in stores

– Breast milk being forced from women

– Providing breast milk as a career/job?