Minister of Health Dr Fenton Ferguson said breastfeeding babies get the best start in life.
He said this year's Breastfeeding Week theme 'Breastfeeding support, working closely with mothers', is "a call for us to support mothers and ensure that the right environment exists to facilitate breastfeeding in the way that is prescribed".
Breastfeeding is recognised in the United Nations' Convention on the Rights of the Child, which emphasises that every child has the right to be breastfed.
Jamaica celebrates Breastfeeding Week this week.
"We have to step up our activities to ensure that mothers are properly guided and assisted with the requisite knowledge to ensure exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months and continued breastfeeding with appropriate complementary foods at least up to two years of age," the minister said earlier this week.
"Mothers have to be supported by fathers, grandparents, aunts, uncles and every other family member and indeed by the community to ensure breastfeeding is done appropriately."
He said the ministry will continue to provide the policy framework and other support necessary to improve the levels of breastfeeding, which have been on the decline in the island since 1983.
*Breastfeeding is one of the most effective ways to ensure children's good health and survival.
*Practically all women can nurse, provided they have good information and adequate support from their families, from the health system, and at their places of work or study.
* Mother's milk is the best food for newborns and young babies. It provides all of the necessary nutrients, contains protective antibodies, and requires no preparation. Breastfeeding is also good for mothers as it helps with weight loss after childbirth and reduces the risks of type 2 diabetes, breast and ovarian cancers, and anaemia.