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US baby formula shortage: The White House said that “President Biden has directed the administration to work urgently to ensure that infant formula is safe and available for families across the country.

“I’ve heard stories of moms first-hand — my own daughter-in-law — bartering for baby formula on Facebook,” she said.

“Pregnant women are asking if they should start stockpiling. They’re anxious during a time of high stress and anxiety.”

Congressman Randy Feenstra said families in his state of Iowa were traveling up to 100 miles to source the formula.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends exclusive breastfeeding for about the first six months of a baby’s life, and continuing to offer a mix of breast milk and solid food until their first birthday.

But the ability to breastfeed can depend on factors such as the mother’s work environment and medical condition. Infant formula is considered a healthy alternative and in practice three quarters of babies are fed with at least some formula by six months.

For some families, formula is the only option. San Diego, California resident Olivia Espinosa Espinosa and her husband Steve Hohman have two young children. One of them, Maya, is only three weeks old and is lactose intolerant.

Espinosa said the shortages have been “extremely frustrating and especially with a newborn, somebody who is requiring… very specific food right now.”

The problem has been worsening since February 17 when, after the death of two infants, manufacturer Abbott announced a “voluntary recall” for formula made at its factory in Michigan — including Similac, a brand used by millions of American families.

A subsequent investigation cleared the formula, but production has yet to resume, exacerbating already ongoing scarcity caused by supply chain problems and labor shortages.

“I think we need to take a moment and think about the fact that, in Joe Biden’s America, it seems like it’s easier to get a crack pipe and a government-funded smoking kit than it is to find baby formula,” said congressman Mike Waltz of Florida, a father of a four-month-old.

The false claim that a US government grant program would fund the distribution of crack pipes in smoking kits stems from an inaccurate article published in February. Despite being repeatedly debunked, it continues to be spread by Biden opponents.

 

 

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