(WEHT)- No one puts baby in a corner, but Tri-State families are feeling a bit cornered when it comes to their baby formula options.
While the shortage hasn’t bothered infant Daisy Jennings too much, it has worried her mother, Heather. Jennings says she’s still been able to find her primary formula, but now has to check inventory at Evansville-area stores before shopping and has struggled to find Enfamil powder for her daughter. Jennings says she’s found help through social media groups of moms on the lookout for formula.
Jennings says the problem is relatively new, adding that she didn’t run into the same problems when her son, 2, used formula earlier in the pandemic. But why is there a shortage? Since the pandemic began, there’s been no shortage of shortages- affecting products from avocados to COVID test kits but the formula problem is more than common supply chain problems.
Kelley School of Business expert Kyle Cattani says a recall on some formulas made by Abbott Nutrition added to the problem. With less supply, demand has skyrocketed and some families are deciding to buy more formula than they need at a time to keep their shelves stocked, worsening the shortage at stores.
The Food & Drug Administration issued a statement on Tuesday, saying in part that they are aware of the problem and are trying to work with producers to safely bring more formula to stores, but Jennings says she’s still concerned.
Jennings explains that she still breastfeeds, but hasn’t been able to “completely supply her daughter,” and is concerned that she may not have enough if the shortage continues or gets worse. Jennings says she’s also worried for mothers who cannot breastfeed at all or need a specific formula for their babies.
Experts say families should speak with their doctor if they’re concerned about their formulas. Eyewitness News reached out to Mead Johnson regarding their response to the shortage, but the company did not respond.