Baby formula from Germany arrives in US amid shortage under Biden’s ‘Operation Fly Formula’

INTANAPOLIS – A military plane carrying enough specialized infant milk for more than half a million bottles arrived in Indianapolis on Sunday, the first of many flights expected from Europe to alleviate a shortage that has made parents try to enough to feed their children.

President Joe Biden authorized the use of Air Force aircraft for the effort, dubbed “Operation Fly Formula”, because commercial flights were not available.

The formula weighed 78,000 pounds (35,380 kilograms), White House spokeswoman Karin Jean-Pierre told reporters at Air Force One as Biden flew from South Korea to Japan.

Agriculture Minister Tom Vilsack was in Indianapolis to welcome the arrival of the first mission.

MORE: President Biden invokes Production Defense Act for lack of milk for babies

The flights are intended to offer “some gradual relief in the coming days” as the government works to provide a longer-term response to the shortage, said Brian Dees, director of the White House National Economic Council, on Sunday.

Deese told CNN “State of the Union” that Sunday’s flight brought 15% of the specialty medical formula required in the US and that due to various government actions, people should see “more formula in stores starting as early as this week. “

In the long run, he said, the United States needs more formula providers “so that no single company has so much control over supply chains.”

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Later Sunday, the White House announced the first two approvals of the Production Defense Act for baby products, both from the Ministry of Health and Human Services.

Manufacturer Abbott Nutrition can now take priority orders for raw materials such as sugar and corn syrup for baby food, which the White House says will allow the manufacturer to quickly increase production by a third. Readitt, owner of Mead-Johnson, may now receive priority orders for consumables such as filters and other disposable products needed to produce some of the oils needed to make baby milk, the White House said. Reckitt facilities to operate at maximum capacity.

The Biden government has struggled to address the nationwide shortage of formula, especially hypoallergenic varieties. The crisis follows the closure of the nation’s largest domestic plant in Michigan in February due to safety concerns.

The White House said 132 Nestle Health Science Alfamino Infant and Alfamino Junior formula pallets were to leave Ramstein Air Force Base in Germany for the United States. Another 114 Gerber Good Start Extensive HA formula pallets are expected to arrive in the coming days. In all, about 1.5 million 8-ounce bottles of the three formulas, which are hypoallergenic for children with cow’s milk protein allergies, are expected to arrive this week.

Indianapolis was chosen because it is a Nestle distribution hub. The formula will be loaded into FedEx semi-trailers and transported to a Nestle distribution center about a mile away, where the company will conduct a standard quality check before distributing supplies to hospitals, pharmacies and clinics, according to an on-site official. .

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The White House said in a statement Sunday that a FedEx Express flight from the Pentagon to Nestlé SA from Ramstein Air Force Base would be headed to a Nestle facility in Pennsylvania.

Nestle said it had worked “twenty-four hours” in recent months to address the lack of formula and help meet demand.

“We have significantly increased the amount of our products available to consumers by increasing production and accelerating the general availability of products to retailers and the internet, as well as through hospitals and home health care for the most vulnerable,” the company said in a statement.

“At Nestle we are fully committed to doing what we can to provide parents and carers with the formula they need for their children to thrive,” he added. “We have given priority to these products because they serve a critical medical purpose such as for children with allergies to cow’s milk protein.”

According to Operation Fly Formula, the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Health and Human Services are empowered to seek support from the Department of Defense to receive overseas baby health and safety products that can meet US health and safety standards. store shelves faster. according to the USDA.

Alfamino is mainly available through hospitals and home healthcare companies that serve patients at home.

U.S. regulators and Abbott Nutrition hope to reopen their plant in Michigan next week, but it will take about two months before the product is ready for delivery. The Food and Drug Administration this week eased import requirements for baby milk to try to alleviate the supply problem, which has left store shelves unnamed, and some retailers are blocking supply for parents who are nervous about to feed their children.

Copyright © 2022 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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Baby formula from Germany arrives in US amid shortage under Biden’s ‘Operation Fly Formula’ Source link Baby formula from Germany arrives in US amid shortage under Biden’s ‘Operation Fly Formula’

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