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Retailers now placing limits on infant formula purchases

Abbott-Alere-Acquisition
Posted at 1:27 PM, May 09, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-09 17:25:54-04

Two weeks ago, 3 News Now spoke to moms around Omaha for a first-hand look at the effect of the baby formula shortage. Now, new data shows that out-of-stock rates hit a nationwide 31% in April, with some states having rates as high as 40%, according to a report by 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 local food pantries, churches, shelters and hospital emergency rooms that may provide small amounts of infant formula based on need.