Abbott Nutrition, the nation’s largest baby formula supplier, has reached an agreement with the Food and Drug Administration and could restart production within two weeks, with formula expected to hit shelves in six to eight weeks.
The agreement comes months after the Abbott Nutrition plant in Sturgis, Michigan, voluntarily shut down and recalled certain formulas in February following consumer complaints that several babies who had consumed Abbott formula had become sick. The production halt and recall have contributed to US formula shortages, leaving many families scrambling to feed their children.
Abbott chairman and CEO Robert B. Ford confirmed in a press release that the company would begin production of EleCare, Alimentum and metabolic formulas first and then begin production of Similac and other formulas.
“Our number one priority is getting infants and families the high-quality formulas they need, and this is a major step toward re-opening our Sturgis facility so we can ease the nationwide formula shortage. We look forward to working with the FDA to quickly and safely re-open the facility,” said Ford. “We know millions of parents and caregivers depend on us and we’re deeply sorry that our voluntary recall worsened the nationwide formula shortage. We will work hard to re-earn the trust that moms, dads and caregivers have placed in our formulas for more than 50 years.”
In the proposed agreement between the FDA and Abbott Nutrition, the formula giant has agreed to take corrective actions to ensure formula production remains safe and clean moving forward. “Today’s action means that Abbott Nutrition has agreed to address certain issues that the agency identified at their infant formula production facility in Michigan,” said FDA Commissioner Robert M. Califf, MD. “The public should rest assured that the agency will do everything possible to continue ensuring that infant and other specialty formulas produced by the company meet the FDA’s safety and quality standards, which American consumers have come to expect and deserve.”
While families await production to begin at Abbott Nutrition and formula to be restocked, you can read more about available resources to help you find the formula you need .