As the formula shortage continues to grip the United States, millions of parents are struggling to access the very products they rely on to feed their babies.
The crisis is hitting poorer families disproportionately hard. According to The Guardian, nearly half of baby formula in the US is bought under the Wic program, which helps low-income women, infants and children. Abbott provides formula to about half of the babies receiving Wic benefits. When these products disappeared, families were left scrambling to find alternatives.
There are racial disparities, also. Rates of breastfeeding are lower for Black babies than white babies, according to a 2019 report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Black women are more likely to live at or below the poverty level and more likely to return to work sooner, the report states.
As the FDA struggles to reopen formula factories, as we await President Biden’s plans to ship formula in from overseas and for Congress to meet to explore the crisis, our community is taking action. Join us in and learn what you can do to try to end the shortage and how to get formula if you need it:
Join the HATCH Formula Drive: We are partnering with two amazing organizations, Baby2Baby and Welcome Baby, to donate any leftover or spare cans of formula that are unopened and unexpired to moms in need. HATCH, alongside our friends Lalo and Union Square Play, have opened our stores to drop-off locations in NYC and Los Angeles. Click on the link for more information!
United Way’s 2-1-1: Dial 2-1-1 to connect to a community resource specialist with United Way who possible help identify food pantries and other sources of local infant formula.