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Baby Formula Shortage: Tips to Try

Updated: Aug 18, 2022

The last thing a mom should have to worry about is how to feed her baby.


Photo of a baby's milk bottle and baby's hands

The formula shortage makes us feel outraged for all the parents struggling to find the right type of formula for their baby. There are moms and dads driving all over their state (and farther!) to find formula, pleading on social media for help and watering down their formula because they are afraid of running out. How did this happen?


According to the New York Times, the pandemic, supply chain issues, ingredient shortages and a recall have all led baby formula inventory being down 40%. 40%!


The formula shortage is nationwide. The problem is being compounded because some people are buying extra formula to ensure their baby has enough food.


We’ve put together a few ideas and resources for those of you facing this shocking challenge.


In the New York Times article, they’ve listed formulas that are available to ship now, including formulas for different sensitivities. See their full list here.


If your baby drinks standard cow's milk or soy based formula, it is OK to switch to a different, standard formula. If your baby is on a specialized formula, you should talk to your pediatrician before switching. Try to find a formula with the most similar ingredients as your go-to formula.


Another potential option is to switch to ready-to-feed bottles; these were not impacted by the recall, but are more expensive.


Tips to Try:

  • Check this list for formulas available to ship now. (The list was updated May 17, 2022)

  • Talk to your pediatrician about making a formula switch.

  • Reach out to your OB-GYN or pediatrician to see if they have any formula samples or know of anywhere to find formula or breastmilk.

  • Ask family and friends in other areas to check their local store for you.

  • If you are a breastfeeding mom and supplementing with formula, this is a great time to work with a lactation consultant to boost your milk supply.


What Not To Do:

  • Do not dilute formula; this could cause an electrolyte imbalance and is not nutritionally adequate.

  • Don’t buy formulas from online marketplaces; you could get scammed.

  • Don’t use toddler formula for babies.

  • Don’t use formula that is not FDA approved.

  • Don’t hoard formula; this will only make this tragic issue worse.


Alexis Harris, a mom and the owner of Leawood Nutrition in Leawood, Kansas, is collecting formula donations for moms in need. If you are looking for formula and live in this area, you can contact Alexis through her personal or business Instagram: @alexisdamaraannharris @leawoodnutrition


Alexis Harris, a mom and the owner of Leawood Nutrition in Leawood, Kansas with her husband

“The reason why I want to help these moms is because I have two kids myself: an eight-year-old and an eight-month-old. I know the struggle."


"My kids are my WHY. They’re why I do the things I do. I want to teach them how to give back to the community. It’s my job as a parent to teach them.”

Our team at Bonsie will continue to put together advice and resources to help you navigate this unforeseeable crisis.



Sources:

Szalinski, C. (2022, May 17). America Is Grappling With a Baby Formula Shortage. Here’s How to Navigate It. New York Times. https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.nytimes.com/wirecutter/blog/baby-formula-shortage-what-to-do/amp/


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