Carbajal Tackles Infant Formula Shortage with Votes to Pass Two Bills to Increase Supply, Cut Red Tape
Measures passed by bipartisan House today offset shortage of formula in highly-consolidated industry with recent factory closures
Washington, May 18, 2022
Today, Congressman Salud Carbajal voted with a bipartisan majority of the U.S. House of Representatives to pass two measures aimed at alleviating shortages of infant formula for Central Coast families.
The first, the Infant Formula Supplemental Appropriations Act, is a $28 million emergency funding bill that would give the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) funds to purchase additional formula from FDA-approved facilities in Europe and Latin America and increase resources for safety inspectors for formula.
The other, the bipartisan Access to Baby Formula Act would cut red tape with the Women, Infant and Children (WIC) program to allow them to make the formula purchases necessary to supply families in need. It is estimated at least half of all infant formula sold in the U.S. is purchased through WIC.
“I’ve heard firsthand from parents who are struggling right now to find essential formula needed to feed their children. The failures of one company should not lead to such a nationwide crisis, and this week my colleagues and I are stepping up to pass bills that will put more formula on store shelves and put an end to this shortage,” said Rep. Carbajal. “For parents having trouble right now, I encourage you to utilize the new HHS dashboard that can help find formula near you. I will always fight to lower costs and ease burdens on Central Coast families, and I urge the Senate to act quickly to get these emergency measures implemented as soon as possible.”
Recently, the Department of Health and Human Services launched a dashboard of resources to help parents locate formula and connect with food banks and other providers that may have infant formula supply near them.
The webpage can be found at HHS.gov/formula.
Shortages of infant formula impact new parents of children of all backgrounds and needs, especially children with allergies or immune conditions or children living in homes below the poverty line.
A recent closure of a major formula plant in Michigan has caused major ripple effects in the formula supply chain, as the owner of the plant controls over a third of the formula market. The U.S. formula market is dominated by only four major formula suppliers.
The measures passed by Carbajal and the House today now advance to the U.S. Senate for further consideration.