The baby formula shortage that took place in the United States in 2022 is a severe example of a global supply chain crisis. A combination of factors led to the shortage, including a widespread product recall after two babies allegedly died after drinking contaminated Abbott infant formula. Market concentration and import restrictions are also factors contributing to the shortage. These factors, among others, caused a price spike in infant formula, which forced a shortage. The result was a shortage of nearly two million bottles.
In July, stocks of the product fell below 60 percent. According to the IRI, many parents were forced to pay inflated prices for the formula. Scammers took advantage of the situation, as many consumers didn’t realize they were buying from a rogue site. Despite this, the shortage has left many parents in a bind. The latest statistics show that nearly half of all consumers are likely to be affected by the shortage.
A recent outbreak of bacteria at a facility that makes Abbott’s Similac and other formula brands forced the company to temporarily suspend production. However, the shortage has now decreased to a small degree, and the company’s formula production has resumed. While federal leaders are unwilling to provide a timeline for the end of the shortage, many parents are trying to stay optimistic. The current situation has been “difficult” for all concerned parties.