President Joe Biden took steps on Wednesday to address the shortage of infant formula in the United States, invoking the Defense Production Act to help manufacturers obtain the ingredients needed to ramp up supply, the White House said.
Biden also directed U.S. agencies to use Defense Department commercial aircraft to bring formula into the United States from overseas.
Baby formula aisles at U.S. supermarkets have been decimated since top U.S. manufacturer Abbott Laboratories in February recalled formulas after complaints of bacterial infections. On Monday, Abbott said it had reached an agreement with the U.S. health regulator to resume production of baby formula at its Michigan plant, a major step toward resolving the nationwide shortage.
In a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, Biden noted that the industry should be producing more formula in the coming weeks and months.
“Imports of baby formula will serve as a bridge to this ramped-up production. Therefore I am requesting you take all appropriate measures available to get additional safe formula into the country immediately,” he said.
The White House said Biden was invoking the Defense Production Act to ensure manufacturers have the ingredients to make safe formula.
Social media posts are urging parents who face baby formula shortages to make it themselves. But pediatricians told the AFP wire service they do not advise patients to use homemade formula, warning it may lack vitamins and nutrients key to helping infants grow and thrive.
Newsmax wires contributed to this report.
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