The nation’s shortage of baby formula was the focus of a serious talk in the state’s Public Health and Children’s Committees on Tuesday.
“Many families are describing having such a hard time finding formula,” said Dr. Molly Markowitz, Yale School of Medicine pediatrician.
“I think we are at the bottom of this right now and I think some of the steps that have been taken in the last 72 hours are going to start increasing the supply,” said Wayne Pesce, Connecticut Food Association president.
Pesce said those steps to boost supplies include loosening regulations, allowing imports and opening back up plants.
An Abbott Nutrition facility is expected to resume making baby formula within two weeks, but the impact could still take a while.
“The shortages that exist right now can’t be overcome in two to three weeks. It will be longer. And I believe the president should invoke the Defense Production Act which will enable some of the production lines in other companies to expand,” said Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D – Connecticut.
There was also talk about longer-term solutions on a national level to make the formula market more competitive, so that it's not so heavily controlled by a few companies.
On Tuesday, House Democrats unveiled a $28-million emergency spending bill which would help the FDA make sure the formula supply is restored in a safe and secure manner.
While there have been national concerns about price gauging, there have been no reports here in Connecticut, according to the Attorney General’s Office.
Some smaller stores may have more supply than busy, larger businesses. Also, families are suggested to reach out to community pharmacies, local food or milk banks.
WIC’s stage agency can help parents find alternative formula solutions and can be reached at 800-741-2142.
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