Philly families affected by formula shortage receive some relief

KYW News Radio
KYW News Radio

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) – After months of empty store shelves, the U.S. is still facing a nationwide shortage of baby formula.

95 tons of baby formula landed at Philadelphia International Airport early July as part of President Biden’s Operation Fly Formula Mission.

Now, the latest shipment of 4.3 million 8-ounce bottle equivalents of Danone’s Aptamil Gold Plus Stage 1 infant formula will come from New Zealand and land in Chicago, Illinois on August 8 and 11.

The Biden administration is sourcing two flights, facilitated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, for the 19th Operation Fly Formula mission. Experts say formula availability is slowly going back to normal and for many families, it's better than it was even a month or two ago. However lower income families are still the most vulnerable.

The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia suggests parents contact local food banks or churches in the community if they're having trouble finding or paying for formula. They also say local parent groups on social media sites, like Facebook, are great resources to help find local stores where formula is stocked or for sharing unopened cans.

The city website connects parents with a lactation consultant around the clock.

Those enrolled in the Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (commonly known as WIC), can reach out to their local office for help figuring out which formulas they can buy with their WIC card and navigating the formula shortage.

Back in the spring, Abbott Nutrition announced they'd cover the cost of switching baby formula brands in states where it has WIC contracts. That will be in effect through August 30.

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