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We’ve been strangers to shortages in recent years, but one deficiency leaves parents reeling: baby food. Supply for this essential good has been low since November last year and has only worsened in recent months. Abbott Nutrition recalled their Similac, Alimentum, and EleCare formulas in February after four babies became ill and two died, raising concerns about bacterial contamination at the Michigan facility. The plant was shut down by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and remains closed — although Abbott announced Monday it had reached an agreement with the FDA to reopen the plant, with the new product expected to be released in six to eight weeks.
Parents across the country have struggled to find the formulas their babies need, often returning home empty-handed after being confronted with bare boards. About 40% of the popular formula brands are sold out in the US, but all hope is not lost. We spoke with accredited pediatricians and organizations to gather tips to help you navigate the shortage. We’ve aWe’veade a list of retailers who regularly stock formulas. We understand you’re frustrated about your baby, and we’re here to help you get through this.
►Formula Deficiency: How To Feed Your Baby During Bottle Feeding Deficiency
►Latest: FDA has allowed the sale of foreign baby food in the US, hoping it’s thit’sgic bullet to end the shortage
Which stores sell baby food?
While many places are out of formula, rest assured there are still some storefronts stocking it; the trick is to know where to look. Sometimes this means looking where youn’t find baby food, such as chain stores or drug stores. We have compiled a list of places where bottle feeding is available. If the store near you is out of stock, check back regularly for updates, as new supplies are common. Remember that some stores have an in-store formula, even if they seem to be sold out online.
Amazon has a great selection of baby food offers and forecasted shipping dates.
AlbertsAlbertson’smarket giant AlbertsAlbertson’s baby food in stores ck for takeout and delivery.
Bed, Bath, and Beyond: Bed, Bath, and Beyond have brands like Similac and Enfamil in store.
BJ’s: WBJ’souse club BJ’s stBJ’s a wide variety of high-quality baby foods for collection, same-day delivery, and in-store.
BuybuyBaby: BuybuyBaby has several brands of baby food for both in-store and shipping.
Costco: Warehouse giant Costco has brands like Enfagrow available for shipping and in-store.
CVS: Pharmacy chain CVS has baby food in powder and liquid form in-store and online.
Duane Reade: The New York drugstore chain is owned by Walgreens, and shoppers can browse WalgreeWalgreen’sory for shipping options or shop in-store.
Food Lion: Food Lion stocks several brands online.
HEB: Texas-based HEB stocks Gerber baby foods and others online.
IGA: Supermarket chain IGA carries the formula in-store and online.
Jewel-Osco: This Midwestern supermarket chain stocks several brands and offers online shopping, takeout, and delivery options.
Kroger: Kroger’Kroger’sselection of baby foods online and stoin-storeer: Meijer is a supercenter throughout the Midwest. When in stock, baby food can be purchased in-store, ordered online for in-store pickup, orpickuped online.
Office Max and Office Depot: The office supply stores (which share a parent company) have a limited number of formulas in select stores.
Piggly Wiggly: Piggly Wiggly is a grocery center in the US Southern and Midwestern regions, carrying brands such as Similac and Enfamil.
Publix: Florida-based supermarket chain Publix has several types of baby food, such as powder, concentrated liquid, or milk-based.
RiteAid: Drugstore chain RiteAid stocks baby food for shipping and store pickup.
Spickup Safeway supermarkets carry a wide selection of baby food in stores and online.
Sam’s CSam’sSam’s CSam’sowned by Walmart has baby food for shipping and in-store.
Save A Lot: Besides shopping in the store, discount supermarket Save A Lot also offers online ordering via Instacart.
ShopRite: The supermarket chain stocks brands like Enfamil and Gerber and offers online shopping as well as in-store pickup andpickupcal shopping.
Stop&Shop: Stop&Shop temporarily limits infant formula purchases to four per customer but offers online purchases and in-store shopping for several brands, some of which are in stock for shipping.
Target: Target carries all major brand formulas and ships nationally. Target also shows insight into its inventory by store and offers options to buy online and pick up in-store.
Thrive Market: Thrive Market has organic baby food on sale.
Vons: Southern California supermarket chain Vons has a selection of baby food in stores.
Walmart: Walmart has a wide selection of formulas and ships nationally.
Walgreens: The nationwide pharmacy chain offers several baby foods in stock for shipping, collection, and same-day delivery.
Whole Foods: Whole Foods stocks a variety of organic baby foods and is available for same-day shipping with Amazon Prime.
Winn-Dixie: Southern Grocery Store Winn-Dixie offers online shopping and in-store buying.
How long does baby food last?
The short answer is that it depends. When it comes to new, unopened formula packages, some have a shelf life of up to 18 months. (You’ll You’llhis information in the form of an expiration date on the box.) It’s imIt’sant to stick to this date because the formula becomes less nutritious after that. An opened box generally lasts a month, according to the CDC. The prepared procedure at room temperature takes just two hours, while the set formula kept refrigerated is good for up to a day.
Should I stock up on baby food?
When buying formula, it’s imit’sant to remember that other families will also go through the shortfall — hoarding limited supplies will make the product worse. Both in-person and online storefronts limit the number of formula shoppers they can purchase. “Due to “increased demand and various challenges for suppliers, infant and toddler formulas are experiencing constraints across the country. As with other retailers, we have introduced purchase limits of three per transaction on all infant and toddler formulas to help improve inventory,” a Wal “reens spokesperson told Reviewed. “We con “inure insurer diliginurey with our supplier partners to meet customer requirements best. †
Some stores have even moved their inventory behind the counter, meaning you have to ask an employee for a formula instead of finding it on the shelf.
How to switch baby food?
If the formula is still in stock in your area, but you’re you’rehavingle finding your regular make or model, switching may be the way to go. Be sure to consult a pediatrician before making any changes to your baby’sbaby’st. Babies can be fed any regular, non-specialized formula,” says “r. Karen Chorvat, a pediatrician in the Chicago area. “Everyt” ing is nutritionally similar, and most babies can switch without much impact or trouble.” (If y “you’re your baby has allergies or other nutritional needs, switch to a formula with similar ingredients — check with your pediatrician for the next steps, Dr. Chorvat said.)
Parents of older babies can also explore other options; she said — some brands of toddler food, generally aimed at infants up to 24 months, are indicated for use in infants as young as nine months. “If you “have a 9-month-old, it may be worth asking about a service,” says “r. Chorvat. See if he said that the transition earlier is a viable option for them; what should I do if my baby food runs out?
Consider connecting with your local community both in person and online. Call your pediatrician first; they may share recommendations or examples. Dr. Edmond Saraff, a pediatrician at So Cal Integrative Wellness Center, suggests reaching out to family or members of your community who may share something extra. Websites like Facebook and Nextdoor can connect you with local parents and resources.
While our list helps find places to buy formulas online, it can help expand your search beyond the big chains and shopping in person at local stores. Always make ahead to see if the store you’re you’re you’re formula available. Dr. Chorvat said parents with access to local food banks could find a recipe there. Another option could be to get donated breast milk from milk banks.
The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (or WIC) is also a great resource. The mission of the WIC is to provide mothers with breastfeeding support, nutritious foods, healthy eating information, and health care referrals. Your local WIC may be able to give you a formula or put you in touch with someone who can.
When will the shortage of infant formula end?
Retailers work diligently to replenish inventories as best they can. “We con “inure tenure with inure-baby food suppliers to address this issue,” said “atthewMatthewhette, Senior Manager of Retail Communications at CVS.
The Biden administration has announced steps to bring more formulas to shelves, including simplifying product offerings to increase the speed and scale of production, combating price pushes, and increasing the supply of recipes through increased imports. To ease supply stress, the FDA will begin allowing the sale of foreign recipes.
In developing news, the Michigan plant today signed an agreement with the FDA outlining the steps needed to resume production. After the FDA approves it, Abbott could reopen in two weeks. It can take six to eight weeks from the time of reopening before products are back on the shelves.
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