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Baby formula shortage: 78,000 pounds of infant formula arrives in US from Europe in ‘Operation Fly Formula’

INTANAPOLIS – Enough specialized baby milk for more than half a million baby bottles arrived in Indianapolis on Sunday.

The formula, which weighed 78,000 pounds (35,380 kilograms), was flown in by military plane, White House spokeswoman Karin Jean-Pierre told Air Force One as President Joe Biden flew from South Korea to Japan.

It is the first of many flights carrying baby milk from Europe this weekend that is expected to alleviate the growing shortage in the US. The flights were approved by Biden.

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

The Biden government – which has struggled to address a nationwide shortage of formula, especially hypoallergenic varieties – has dubbed the effort “Operation Fly Formula”. 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 Nestlé Health Science formula palettes Alfamino Infant and Alfamino Junior were to leave Ramstein Air Force Base in Germany for the United States. Another 114 Gerber Good Start Extensive HA formula palettes 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 allergy, 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. .

Air Force planes are transporting the original batch of formula because no commercial flights were available this weekend.

The flight was the first of many to provide “some gradual relief in the coming days” as the government worked to provide a more lasting response to the shortage, Brian Deese, director of the White House National Economic Council, said on Sunday.

Rees told CNN’s “State of the Union” that Sunday’s flight brought 15% of the specialty medical formula required in the United States and that due to various government actions, people should see “more formula in stores starting already 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.”

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 manufacturer 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 shortage: 78,000 pounds of infant formula arrives in US from Europe in ‘Operation Fly Formula’ Source link Baby formula shortage: 78,000 pounds of infant formula arrives in US from Europe in ‘Operation Fly Formula’

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