With the baby formula shortage affecting millions of families around the United States, the Biden administration has gone from trying to play the blame game, to introducing “Operation Fly Formula” which would allow the military to import massive amounts of baby formula from Europe. At the same time, one of America’s largest providers of baby formula, Abbott Nutrition, released a statement from its CEO Robert Ford apologizing for contributing to the shortage due to a massive recall back in February.
In the letter, Ford stated, “the past few months have distressed us as they have you. And so I want to say: We’re sorry to every family we’ve let down since our voluntary recall exacerbated our nation’s baby formula shortage.”
The CEO continued, “We believe our voluntary recall was the right thing to do. We will not take risks when it comes to the health of children. The data collected during the investigation, genetic sequencing, retained product samples and available product from the four complaints did not find any connection between our products and the four reported illnesses in children. However, the FDA’s investigation did discover a bacteria in our plant that we will not tolerate. I have high expectations of this company, and we fell short of them.”
On top of apologizing, Abbott Nutrition created a $5 million fund to help children who have been placed in the hospital due to the shortage. “I will not mince words — this is tragic and heartbreaking, and it is consuming my thoughts and those of my colleagues.”
As for the plan from the White House, President Joe Biden tweeted on Sunday, “Folks, I’m excited to tell you that the first flight from Operation Fly Formula is loaded up with more than 70,000 pounds of infant formula and about to land in Indiana. Our team is working around the clock to get safe formula to everyone who needs it.”
Datasembly CEO Ben Reich found in a report that the shortage of baby formula increased from 23% to 31% over the last few months. “Inflation, supply chain shortages, and product recalls have brought an unprecedented amount of volatility for baby formula. We expect to continue to see the baby formula category being dramatically affected by these conditions.”
This piece was written by Jeremy Porter on May 24, 2022. It originally appeared in DrewBerquist.com and is used by permission.
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