FDA Predicts When Parents Might See Relief In Baby Formula Crisis

By Cherranda Smith

The FDA commissioner revealed that relief may be on the way in the baby formula shortage and it could come “within days.”

Dr. Robert Califf told lawmakers of the House Appropriate Committee Thursday (May 19) that parents struggling to find baby formula “should see improvement” in supply soon as military planes help deliver imported formula products.

“We’re pulling a bunch of levers at the same time,” Califf told Rep. Julia Letlow, who asked about a timeline for when parents and other caregivers can expect to see baby formula in stores. Hours after Califf testified, an administration official confirmed to NBC News that flights with imported baby formula should be making their way to the US as soon as this weekend. The first flight is coming from Zurich, carrying 1.5 million 8-ounce bottles’ worth of baby formula.

Three types of formulas are reportedly on board the first flight: Alfamino Infant, Alfamino Jr., and Gerber Good Start Extensive HA –– all hypoallergenic formulas that are set to be distributed widely after landing in Indiana.

The update comes after the FDA struck a deal with Abbott Nutrition –– the nation’s largest manufacturer of baby formula –– to get the Michigan plant back open after a months-long shutdown due to bacterial contamination allegations. Four infants who ate formula from the plant were sickened, and two of them died, prompting an investigation.

The plant was closed in February 2022 following a January 31 inspection that found “significant operational deficiencies.”

While baby formula is on the way, Califf said it might be weeks before things “get back to normal.”

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