It’s welcome news for parents desperate to find baby formula to feed their babies. The Third World-ish spectacle of empty store shelves that would normally hold baby formula will soon be eased. The U.S. Air Force will fly in pallets of baby formula from Europe this weekend.
As is the pattern with the Biden administration, a general announcement was made without much in the way of details. The White House said Friday that the first flights from Europe will arrive in Indiana this weekend. The name of this international operation is “Operation Fly Formula”. Biden is quick to take the credit and updated a tweet on what is being done to get baby formula on store shelves.
I’ve got an update on Operation Fly Formula: We’re flying in the first shipment over the weekend.
That means up to 1.5 million bottles of safe Nestlé infant formula will be coming to U.S. shelves as soon as possible.
— President Biden (@POTUS) May 20, 2022
The White House says 132 pallets of Nestlé Health Science Alfamino Infant and Alfamino Junior formula will leave Ramstein Air Base in Germany and arrive in the U.S. this weekend. Another 114 pallets of Gerber Good Start Extensive HA formula are expected to arrive in the coming days. Altogether about 1.5 million 8-ounce bottles of the three formulas, which are hypoallergenic for children with cow’s milk protein allergy, will arrive this week.
While Biden initially requested that the Pentagon use commercially chartered aircraft to move the formula from Europe to the U.S., the White House said no commercial flights were available this weekend. Instead, U.S. Air Force planes will transport the initial batch of formula.
The part about the formula being hypoallergenic for children is important. Many babies aren’t able to handle some kinds of formula because of allergies or other issues. They don’t have the freedom of using any formula that is available because of specific needs. It must be particularly stressful for parents of those infants.
Abbott, the nation’s largest manufacturer of baby formula, closed its Michigan plant in February over safety issues. It hopes to reopen that plant next week. Even then, it will take two months for formula to be ready to be delivered. The Abbott plant closed and there was no plan for what would happen next, namely supply shortages. The FDA eased importation requirements this week in order that formula could be imported from Europe. This week. Government overreach in regulations prevented importation of baby formula from Europe. This week Biden invoked the Defense Production Act.
How will the Defense Production Act help out in the shortage of baby formula? Pentagon spokesman John Kirby explained. Kirby, by the way, is moving into the White House communications shop to bail out the inept Karine Jean-Pierre.
Right now, the principal job for the military will be to work with HHS, the Department of Agriculture, the FDA, to help provide contract commercial air to move formula from overseas – particularly Europe – to the United States. So we’re working in close consultation with those agencies right now to better determine what the requirement is. And then we’ll work with our contract, commercial air carriers to actually go pick up the baby formula wherever it is in Europe particularly, and get it to the appropriate place here in the United States. And we think that using contract air right now, that’s probably the best approach, the most cost-efficient, and quite frankly, probably the quickest. …
That’s one of the things the Defense Production Act can give you. Not only can it help get suppliers and manufacturers of baby formula the kinds of ingredients that they need faster to make that formula, but it can also help boost production by helping create industry to create the actual machinery that is used to make baby formula. It can spur actual fabricators to get the equipment that’s needed to, again in this one case, get the Abbott plant back up and running again. They might need equipment. DPA can help provide that equipment a little bit faster, get it fabricated and into the factory a little bit faster. So it actually can cover a lot of ground here.
Did you ever in your life imagine that we would see a time when the United States couldn’t feed its babies? Before February, it was unimaginable. Parents began noticing that formula was in short supply back in February when the Michigan plant closed. Things only got worse as time went on. The Biden administration ignored the growing crisis until stories of empty store shelves and panicked parents began to surface through media coverage. Media coverage and the Biden administration were both slow to recognize the problem.
Where has the FDA been this whole time? Where’s Mayor Pete? This administration is dangerously incurious about what is happening in the lives of regular Americans. They simply ignored what was right in front of them. Mayor Pete is happy to be the media’s poster boy as a new parent working in Biden’s cabinet yet where has he been in managing the supply chain problems? He admitted on a Sunday morning show last weekend that he is relying on family and friends to find baby formula and send it to him for his baby twins. He is personally affected yet where’s he been on crisis management?
Sleepy Joe waits for everything to devolve into a crisis before he acts. The Biden baby formula crisis could have been avoided and parents could have avoided the stress of worrying how they will find food for their babies. Europe has an abundant supply of baby formula. The FDA could have loosened its regulations before this week. There is no excuse for the Biden baby formula crisis reaching this level other than ineptness and incompetence in the White House. Biden governs on the defense, not the offense. He deliberately takes a wait and see approach on everything.
We were told by bumbling Joe that he would bring back government professionals, the grown-ups in the room. He pledged to get government working again coming out of the pandemic. His performance in office so far shows it was all a lie. There has been crisis after crisis since he came into office. The baby formula shortage is just the latest crisis. Heaven help us, as this man has more than two years left in the White House.