You really can buy just about anything on the Internet these days, but parents considering purchasing breast milk online should be more than a little hesitant: there’s a high likelihood you’ll be giving baby a heavy side of cow’s milk. A new study published in Pediatrics found that 10% of breast milk samples purchased online are mixed with cow’s milk. The samples are not just showing trace amounts of the milk either; some of the samples were found to be an almost half and half mix of breast milk with cow’s milk or infant formula. As the researchers stressed, it can be difficult from looks alone to determine whether or not online breast milk really comes from a human or cows, and well-meaning parents could be unknowingly exposing their babies to cow’s milk, a common allergen. Add this info to a 2013 study about the rampant bacterial growth and contamination in milk purchased online and to the fact that the online breast milk market is unregulated and rife for the sale of products that have been adulterated or tampered with, and most of us should become a whole lot more buyer-beware.

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