News

Actions

Great Falls crisis nursery director talks about infant formula shortage

Toby’s House Crisis Nursery
Posted at 5:55 PM, May 16, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-17 14:31:40-04

GREAT FALLS — In the video above, Susie Zeak - director of Toby's House Crisis Nursery in Great Falls - talks about the shortage of infant formula.


Baby formula out-of-stock rates nationwide hit 31% in April with some states having rates as high as 40%, according to Datasembly. Supply-chain issues and recalls have combined to create shortages and some retailers are issuing limits in hopes of keeping some items in stock.

The New York Times reported that CVS and Walgreens are limiting customers to three baby formula products per purchase. Target is limiting online purchases of formula to four items per transaction.

Abbott said it is tripling its production of Similac Ready-to-Feed formula compared to last year. The announcement came following a recall of products at its plant in Michigan.

“Across the U.S., we're prioritizing production of infant formula products to help replenish the supply in the market. And, this year, we will more than double the amount of Similac Advance powder formula we're bringing in from our manufacturing facility in Cootehill, Ireland," Abbott said.

Amid shortages, the Infant Nutrition Council of America recommends families not to purchase formula from individuals, such as at flea markets, on e-commerce websites, or on internet auction sites. The organization also recommends parents not dilute formula, feed cow’s milk to infants or share breast milk.

The organization says families may be able to find products from food pantries, churches, shelters and hospitals that may provide small amounts of infant formula based on need.

The Biden administration announced Friday it has launched a website to provide resources for families struggling to find infant formula. The website provides contacts for families to reach manufacturers and community resources.

The launch comes amid criticism the Biden administration was slow to act in response to supply-chain disruptions and recalls affecting the stock of infant formula. Earlier this week, Datasembly estimated that 43% of retailers are out of stock of formula.

The White House said following conversations with major producers and retailers, “Manufacturers have ramped up production 30-50%, bringing total production today above pre-recall levels.”

Infant formula maker Abbott said earlier this week it could take several weeks for a ramp-up of products to reach grocery store shelves.

Republicans have pounced on the shortage to decry the administration for not acting sooner.

“This is not a third-world country. This should never happen in the United States of America. We are unified in demanding action to address this crisis,” said Rep. Elise Stefanik, a New York Republican.

In response to the shortage, some retailers have placed limits on the amount of formula that can be purchased.

The New York Times reported that CVS and Walgreens are limiting customers to three baby formula products per purchase. Target is limiting online purchases of formula to four items per transaction.

Abbott, which recalled a number of infant formula products in February, said it is tripling its production of Similac Ready-to-Feed formula compared to last year.


TRENDING ARTICLES