L.A. County buys $750,000 worth of baby formula to distribute to families as shortage persists

Shelves typically stocked with baby formula sit mostly empty at a store.
Families have struggled to find formula following supply chain disruptions and a safety recall.
(Eric Gay / Associated Press)

Los Angeles County has purchased $750,000 worth of baby formula that it will soon start handing out at food distribution sites and through outreach programs for new mothers, officials said.

The county purchased the formula to help feed babies as the nation grapples with a severe infant formula shortage, Supervisor Hilda L. Solis said in a news release.

For weeks now, parents have been scrambling to find formula following supply chain disruptions and a safety recall at the nation’s largest formula producer.


Low-income families are struggling to feed their infants amid the national shortage. A plant shutdown and supply chain issues are to blame.

May 13, 2022

The first shipment of about 12,000 12-ounce cans is expected to arrive late next week. Details about where and when the formula will be distributed have not yet been finalized, said Solis’ spokeswoman, Kimberly Ortega.

Part of the supply will be handed out through the Department of Public Health’s Nurse-Family Partnership Program, which offers home visitation services to new mothers, many of whom are or have been in foster care.

President Biden has invoked the Defense Production Act to speed production of infant formula, and has authorized flights to import more from overseas.

May 18, 2022

Formula will also be distributed at events hosted by the county. Details will be made public soon, Ortega said.

In addition, the county’s Department of Children and Family Services is purchasing $500,000 worth of infant formula that will be distributed to families served by the agency.