A nationwide formula shortage is getting worse

The maker of Ashley Hernandez’s favorite baby formula for her two daughters said it was sold out on its website. Listings on eBay showe...

The maker of Ashley Hernandez’s favorite baby formula for her two daughters said it was sold out on its website. Listings on eBay showed it would cost him up to $120 for a single can. So when she found an online seller offering 10 cans for $40 each, she expressed despair.

“I have two kids,” Ms. Hernandez, 35, from Dallas began her post. “I can’t find it. I can buy it today. I can pay cash.

Across the country, parents are struggling to cope with a nationwide shortage of infant formula – a problem compounded by a recent recall by Abbott Nutrition, a baby food manufacturer. The recall came after at least four babies were hospitalized with bacterial infections and two died after consuming its products, the US Food and Drug Administration mentioned.

“We know our recent recall has caused additional stress and anxiety in an already difficult situation of global supply shortages,” Abbott said in a statement. statement last month. “We work hard to help moms, dads and caregivers get the high-quality nutrition they need for their babies.”

Today, several large retailers anxious to preserve their stocks limit the amount of infant formula their customers can buy.

Pharmacy chain CVS said in a statement that “following supplier challenges and increased customer demand”, shoppers will be limited to three infant formulas per purchase in-store and online.

Walgreens echoed that in a statement, saying it also imposed a three-item limit in an effort to “help improve inventory.” Target said it had a four-item limit online but no in-store limit.

Costco, which did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment on Saturday, had multiple caps on formulas listed on its website.

“The unprecedented scale of this infant formula recall has serious consequences for babies and new parents,” said Brian Dittmeier, senior director of public policy at the National WIC Association, on Saturday. The non-profit organization provides nutritional assistance to women, infants and children across the country.

Dittmeier said Abbott Nutrition is the exclusive supplier to more than half of WIC agencies nationwide, which means “this is not an isolated issue.”

“Every day we hear of hurt, angry, anxious and scared parents,” he said. “The lives of their babies are at stake.”

In retail stores, the shelves are often empty. And parents online are forming Facebook groups to alert each other to restocked stocks or bargains – two rare things these days, Ms Hernandez said.

“It’s a nightmare,” she said.

In a Facebook group called “baby formula for sale,” a mother pleaded Saturday for a specific brand: “Looking for Similac NeoSure in the Arizona area! Please help! I’m almost out.

Mr Dittmeier said that “unlike other food recalls, infant formula supply shortages are affecting a major – if not exclusive – source of nutrition for babies”. Inadequate nutrition, he added, “could have long-term health consequences.”

Datasembly, a retail software company, mentioned that about 31% of infant formula was out of stock nationwide in April. In seven states — Connecticut, Delaware, Montana, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Texas and Washington — the rate for the week of April 3 was even worse, at 40%.

The shortage is also financially straining families already struggling with soaring inflation. The office of the American surgeon general said on its website that families typically spend up to $1,500 on infant formula in the first year.

Mr Dittmeier said the shortage is “particularly acute for infants who need specialist formulas to treat allergies, gastrointestinal problems or metabolic disorders”.

Ms. Hernandez said her daughters, one 6 months old and the other 3 years old, both needed such specialty formula.

The seller she messaged has sold her all 10 cans, but that will only last about five or six weeks, she estimated. The formula she usually buys, EleCare, was one of the recalled Abbott products in February, Ms. Hernandez said.

The affected products have already been removed from stores, but parents can use an online search via Abbott Nutrition to check the status of the products they need.

The Infant Nutrition Council of American stated in a statement that infant formula manufacturers were “committed to ensuring the continued availability of infant formula for every baby” during the shortage.

But Mr Dittmeier said reassurances from manufacturers about ramping up production had not led to products reaching store shelves. “Every day that this crisis continues, parents become more anxious and desperate to find what they need to feed their infants,” he said.

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Newsrust - US Top News: A nationwide formula shortage is getting worse
A nationwide formula shortage is getting worse
Newsrust - US Top News
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