Baby Formula

Availability of Infant Baby Formula reaching its Infancy all over Again? Check out!


Shortage of baby formula has been bothering the parents since the last few days. However, they could heave a sigh of relief from now onwards with Abbott Nutrition inking an agreement with the government of the US for reopening one of its factories, thereby aiding in production.

Going by reverse engineering, we get to know that Abbott had closed its facility based out of Sturgis, Mich last February. This was decided in the wake of numerous infants taking ill after intake of that formula. Furthermore, out of those, two succumbed to bacterial infections.

Complaint against Abbott?

The Justice Department did file complaint against the company with allegations levelled along the lines of non-compliance with safety regulations and quality. Now, the same Abbott, along with government, has agreed upon proposed settlement for resolving the issue. As per rule book, the Michigan facility needs a 3rd-party expert for helping in restarting production and increasing formula supply in a safe manner.

As per Abbott, manufacturing at the facility would be restarting within the subsequent two weeks after approval from the US FDA. It would further take another 6-8 weeks for the plant to be made available across the grocery shelves. In the background, the same US FDA is also devising ways to make up for the shortage of formula nationwide. The topsy-turvy situation faced by several parents was acknowledged by Robert Califf, commissioner of the US FDA.

As such, the US FDA is working towards streamlining the manufacturers’ ability for making the products easily available all across the US. If we try to read between the lines, it would mean that additional products won’t have to face obstacles to hit the market.

The manufacturers demonstrating nutritional adequacy and safety would be given the first preference. As per the FDA’s deputy commissioner for food policy and response “Frank Yiannas”, the emphasis is more on getting as much quantity of product possible on the shelves.

Paediatricians state that Europe and Canada product baby formulas having the same composition as the ones produced in the US. However, the fact that 98% of infant formulas’ supply all across the US is done at the domestic level. Till date, those trying to enter the market of the US have been facing loads of struggles, inclusive of manufacturing standards inflicted by the US FDA.

The parents’ Penury

Zoie Davis was close to 19 months back with not even aa single kidney. As per experts, a feeding tube and dialysis are needed till the child weighs enough to have a kidney transplant. Davis was using an organic brand from all across, but customs made even that process difficult. Frequent switching of brands is detrimental, as it can’t be incorporated without more blood tests.

The lower-income parents are finding it all the more difficult as they have to ferry for more than once from town to town in search of infant formulas.

In all, the crisis needs to be handled with immediate effect, and the US FDA has taken its first step in this direction by easing the norms for new entrants.

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