Abbott Nutrition Plant looking to restart production following baby formula recall

Posted at 6:58 AM, May 12, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-12 07:50:23-04

(WXYZ) — According to the Datasembly, 40% of America's baby formula is out of stock. They say it could take 10 weeks to get the supply back to normal leaving new parents nationwide scrambling to find baby formula.

Many new metro Detroit parents say they're trying their luck anytime they enter a grocery store in search of formula.

Aaron Steining and his mom were at Meijers searching for some earlier this week.

"Way back when he was a baby, it was never a question. You went to the store and you bought what you needed. So this is something that—we're in the United States—this should never be an issue here," Steining's mother Judi said.

In at least 8 states baby formula stock is half what it once was.

It's happening because of hiccups in supply chains and a total shutdown of the Abbot Nutrition Plant here in Michigan.

Lucky for the Steining's, they got what they needed.

"It's not just a problem. It's a crisis, and it's a crisis that's only getting worse," the co-founder and CEO of Organic Baby Formula Company Laura Modi said.

Officials say the FDA is asking stores to cap how much formula each customer can buy.

They're also making sure formula is shipped to regions based on demand.

"In the long term, we need to make sure we're finding solutions, so we're not in this crisis again," Modi said.

U.S. lawmakers plan to hold a hearing later this month to discuss ways to increase production.

Elyssa Schmier says the government needs to act fast.

"The people who are really in a crisis right now are parents who have children who have health issues. People who are medically fragile—have digestive issues. People who kind of found the specialized formula that works for their baby and perhaps, it's the only formula that is their option," Schmier said.

A hearing is set to take place on May 25th.

Abbott Nutrition Plant in Sturgis says they are also ready to operate again.

The facility has been shut down since February when the FDA recalled three brands of formula due to potential bacterial infections including salmonella.

Now, the manufacturer says it could restart production within the next two weeks. It just needs approval from the FDA.