Baby formula remains scarce for local moms; FDA investigating

The nationwide formula shortage is impacting parents, including many right here in Middle Tennessee.
Published: May. 10, 2022 at 8:59 AM CDT|Updated: May. 10, 2022 at 9:00 AM CDT
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - Parents are still dealing with baby formula recalls and ongoing supply chain issues and, unfortunately, the situation isn’t improving.

New data showing it’s only getting worse; the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) says they are monitoring the situation and working with manufacturers to safely ramp up production.

New data from Datasembly shows 40% of baby formula brands are out of stock.

This is a dramatic rise from the first half of 2021 when the rate was between 2-8%.

In data taken from six states – Iowa, South Dakota, North Dakota, Missouri, Texas, and Tennessee – more than half of baby formula was completely sold out during the last week of April.

Experts urge parents to be flexible and speak to their pediatricians about options, especially if it involves children with severe allergies that require special formulas.

It is a situation that has some parents feeling helpless.

“I’m starting to hoard, I’m starting to scour, we’re going further out,” admitted Samantha Cory, who has twins. “I’m going to areas where I know that there’s a low population. What am I doing? You know? it’s unreal.”

The FDA is keeping a close eye on the dwindling supply of baby formula.

“We’re very concerned about it and understand that it should be a concern that moms and dads and grandparents, like me, we want this to get fixed,” explained Robert Califf with the FDA.

In February, the FDA recalled three brands of powdered baby formulas made by Abbott, citing potential bacterial infections, including salmonella.

Abbott put out a statement, saying they were “working closely with the FDA to resume operations” in its Michigan plant.

The American Academy of Pediatrics is urging moms to avoid hoarding and recommends buying no more than a 10-day to 2-week supply of formula.

Some retail stores are limiting just how much formula one can purchase. Walgreens and CVS are limiting their formula purchases to 3 cans per customer, per purchase.

Target stores are limiting customers to four baby formula products online, but do not have any in-store limits.

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