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Will Biden’s act on baby formula ease concerns over growing shortage?

How could the Defense Production Act help ease the baby formula crisis in the U.S.?

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A due to limited supplies sign is shown on the baby formula shelf at a grocery store Tuesday, May 10, 2022, in Salt Lake City. Parents across much of the U.S. are scrambling to find baby formula after a combination of supply disruptions and safety recalls have swept many of the leading brands off store shelves.

AP Photo/Rick Bowmer

President Joe Biden invoked the Defense Production Act on Wednesday amid concerns over the baby formula shortage.

The nationwide shortage was caused by the closure of a Michigan production plant, according to CNBC. When signed, the act “gives the president broad authority to require companies to prioritize the manufacture and allocation of goods in response to a crisis.”

Who does the shortage impact?

  • The shortage has affected millions of Americans so far, according to The Hill.
  • One in five babies depend on baby formula in their first two days after being born, The Hill reported.
  • Even six months after being born “about 25 percent of babies are exclusively breastfeeding,” The Hill’s report read.

How will the Defense Production Act help?

  • Biden’s move gives priority to the makers of baby formula in providing what they need to boost production, according to CNBC.
  • The FDA is also increasing imports for baby formula.
  • The move by Biden also has its critics.

According to CNBC, the shortage has affected U.S. parents since back in February when Abbott Nutrition’s Michigan plant was shuttered over concerns over bacterial contamination.